Ernest Bai Koroma, Sierra Leone’s former president, is set to undergo medical treatment in Nigeria, even as he faces allegations of involvement in a coup attempt last year. The High Court has granted him a three-month leave, sparking speculation about the possibility of an exile arrangement.
Mr. Bai Koroma, who led Sierra Leone for 11 years until 2018, obtained permission to leave the country while awaiting his treason trial scheduled for March. President Julius Maada Bio succeeded him in office.
On Friday afternoon, a Nigerian presidential jet carrying the 70-year-old former president was observed departing from Freetown International Airport.
Persistent rumors suggest that a deal may have been facilitated by the West African regional bloc, ECOWAS, in collaboration with the Sierra Leone government to allow Mr. Bai Koroma to relocate, potentially easing tensions stemming from the unrest in November.
The situation unfolds against the backdrop of uncertainty, with observers questioning the nature of the former president’s departure and its implications for the impending legal proceedings.