Muctaru's Blog

I am Muctaru Wurie from Freetown, Sierra Leone. I blog on a variety of subject from my homeland and most of my post feature well researched stories I do.

Posts Tagged ‘Zubiru Jalloh

Another Positive Image For Sierra Leone

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The first thing that came to my mind when I heard on BBC news that a Sierra Leonean cab driver in New York city found a bag containing $100,000 worth of jewellery, photographs and cash in the back seat of his taxi, tracked down the passenger who left it and gave it back, I said wow, for a long time I haven’t heard such a good news for my country in the western media. This appealing account of a modest immigrant’s frankness was aired and featured in many western news outlets. But in Sierra Leone, many are still unaware of the pride the 42 years Zubiru Jalloh has brought to his beloved homeland: to me he is something of a national hero, who has done his own path to portray the good image of Sierra Leone around the world.

Since he handed over the bag of valuables, Mr. Jalloh has been the centre of attention, from the news media onslaught to the phone calls from friends and family to his newfound fame among the community of cabdrivers, who constantly tease him that he was a fool to return the loot. According to US press reports, a couple who recognized him the day after the story broke gave him $20 for a $7 fare. A mechanic who repaired his taxi knocked $20 off his bill.

To many who visit our country, this will not be a surprise for them, but to millions out there who have never set foot here – this will go a long way to tell who the average Sierra Leonean is. To my surprise, the local Sierra Leonean media has largely missed this story. I think they should pick on this and use it to portray the truly kind and generally loving and candid spirit Sierra Leoneans have for strangers and foreigners. In a truly frank way, this is a story that will make you proud to be a Sierra Leonean. At a time the country is trying to rebrand and let people know that Sierra Leone is ready for business and tourism, I think the APC led government should pick on this as a marketing tool and celebrate this great and candid act.

Written by Muctaru Wurie

February 25, 2011 at 2:53 pm