Official: Sierra Leone vice president home after fleeing

AP News
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Posted: Mar 16, 2015 2:16 PM
Official: Sierra Leone vice president home after fleeing

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — Sierra Leone's vice president has returned to his residence, a government spokesman said Monday, after the leader went into hiding and sought asylum from the U.S., claiming that his life was in danger.

Vice President Samuel Sam-Sumana was expelled earlier this month from the ruling All People's Congress party, which accused him of "orchestrating political violence" and trying to form a new party. He denies the allegations.

Sam-Sumana fled his residence this weekend and told The Associated Press he no longer felt safe after soldiers disarmed his security team.

On Monday, Abdulai Bayraytay, an Information Ministry spokesman, said that Sam-Sumana's security team was back in place and the vice president had returned home. Sam-Sumana did not respond to several calls seeking comment.

At the time that he fled, Sam-Sumana was observing a self-imposed quarantine because one of his body guards had died of Ebola. He asked the U.S. ambassador for asylum, but the embassy urged him and the government to resolve their differences.

Mohammed Bangura, chairman of an umbrella organization for the country's political parties, said the group was meeting Monday with the vice president to try to find an "amicable solution."