A Long Way Gone

What was Freetown like? Chapter21

What was Freetown like? Chapter21

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Ishmael fears the same nifgtmare is repeating itself in Freetown. On the morning of May 25, 1997, Beah hears the sound of gunshots near the State House and House of Parliament buildings. He and Mohamed immediately fear that all they have suffered is about to repeat itself. The central prison is opened and the prisoners freed to loot and commit violence throughout the city. Some look for revenge against the judges and lawyers who imprisoned them, while others join the soliders, who are doing most of the looting. Johnny Paul Koroma comes on the radio, announcing himself as the new president of Sierra Leone. He is head of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council, a body whose main purpose was to overthrow the democratically elected President Yejan Kabbah. Later that night the radio informs the people that the RUF and military have joined forces to oust the civilian government. A state of martial law results.