John Amadu Bangura
Sierra Leonean politician
John Amadu Bangura
Brigadier John Amadu Bangura, C.B.E. was the acting Governor-General of Sierra Leone from 18 April 1968 until 22 April 1968. He led the Sargeants' Coup in 1968 that successfully re-instated civilian rule in Sierra Leone.
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  • 1970
    Age 49
    On 29 March 1970, Stevens had Bangura hanged after he was mercilessly beaten and had concentrated acid poured on Bangura.
    More Details Hide Details To prevent people from making a martyr of Bangura, Stevens ordered his body to be buried at an undisclosed location which he had paved over with the Kissy Road. After Stevens retired from office he told a reporter that he regretted having Bangura killed: "I should not have allowed those executions." Siaka Stevens in his book: I am fully aware that many people were shocked when these sentences were carried out and that even today, much speculation goes on as to what prompted me to allow the law to take its course. There is even a fantastic rumour circulating that I had actually decided to commute the sentences to terms of imprisonment but that certain strong party members had forced me to change my mind. Let me put the record straight here and now. No single person, nor even the demonstrations in favour of the death sentence that filed through the city, had any influence whatsoever on the action I was obliged to take. For me it was a dreadful act. I had to wrench myself out of my own character.
  • 1968
    Age 47
    Bangura formed the Anti-Corruption Revolutionary Movement (ACRM) with a group of non-commissioned officers. In April 1968, Bangura led the Sergeants' Coup and overthrew Brigadier Andrew Juxon-Smith and his National Reformation Council (NRC).
    More Details Hide Details Bangura arrested every high-ranking officer in the army and police, so that he could restore the constitution and democracy to Sierra Leone. There was another side of Bangura. Some accused him of being a bully, a tribalist, with no regard for authority in the military, as violent and having no principles. Being an army personnel, he betrayed his profession not once but twice. Firstly, by joining Stevens and other APC cohorts to plan an invasion of Sierra Leone, the very country he was employed and nurtured to protect and defend. The army was unhappy about this but the worst was to come when Bangura connived with some NCOs to overthrow the NRC government and impose Stevens on the people. Some argued that Stevens knew his violent potential and his position in the heart and mind of the army. Some of Bangura's associates were in the pay pocket of Stevens, hence they were spies. Bangura did plan a coup and Stevens knew every stage of the process that he let it go on to have grounds to liquidate Bangura. The army was happy to see the end of Bangura and when the hour came, they looked the other way while Bangura and his political friend slugged it out.
  • 1967
    Age 46
    Bangura played a pivotal role in the history of post-colonial Sierra Leone. A staunch democrat, he took issue when the government began to collapse after a series of coups that followed the hotly contested elections of March 1967.
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    After a period of successful military career, he was arrested and detained at Pademba Road Prisons prior to the March 1967 General Elections.
    More Details Hide Details He was however released in March that year and appointed Counsellor and Head of the Chancery at the Sierra Leone Embassy in Washington D.C. He mysteriously disappeared from his post to become Chairman of the National Interim Council (N.I.C.) which brought back Civilian Rule after a successful take over by the Other Ranks from the Military Junta, the National Reformation Council (N.R.C.) in 1968. He became Commander of the First Battalion, Royal Sierra Leone Regiment and of the Royal Sierra Leone Military Forces after this operation. On 1 May 1969 he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier and honoured in the 1970 New Year Honours with the C.B.E. (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) (Military Division). Brigadier John Amadu Bangura's thorough military training and great experience made him what he was a rare soldier.
  • 1966
    Age 45
    In 1966 he was posted to attend the Joint Services Staff College (J.S.S.C.) in Latimer, Buckinghamshire.
    More Details Hide Details He was a fellow of the College. In the same year he was promoted to the rank of Colonel.
  • 1964
    Age 43
    Brigadier John Amadu Bangura became Commander of the First Battalion Royal Sierra Leone Regiment in 1964 when he attained the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel.
    More Details Hide Details These promotions were preceded or followed by several successful courses in various Military Centers in the United Kingdom. One such course was the All Arms Division Course for substantive Majors in the British Army.
  • 1962
    Age 41
    In 1962 he served with the First Sierra Leone Contingent on the Congo Operations of the United Nations Organization (U.N.O.C.).
    More Details Hide Details On his return home that year he was promoted to the rank of Major.
  • 1958
    Age 37
    In 1958 he was promoted to the rank of Captain.
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  • 1955
    Age 34
    He returned to Sierra Leone in 1955 and was appointed Commander or a Rifle Company's Platoon in the First Battalion, Royal Sierra Leone Regiment.
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  • 1954
    Age 33
    He graduated at Sandhurst in August 1954 with the rank of Second Lieutenant.
    More Details Hide Details After a successful Young Officers' Course at Hythe and Warminster he was posted on secondment to the British Army on the Rhine in Germany. While on secondment he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant.
  • 1952
    Age 31
    His performance at Teshie Camp necessitated his transfer to Eaton Hall, Mons Officer Cadet School in 1952.
    More Details Hide Details At Mons Officers' Cadet School he was recommended by British Army authorities to go to the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.
  • 1949
    Age 28
    He left school in 1949 and joined the Army in 1950 as an ordinary soldier.
    More Details Hide Details While in the other ranks he served and attended courses in both Ghana and Nigeria. In one such course, the Platoon Commanders' course in Burma Camp, Teshie, Ghana, he graduated first in a group of sixteen Warrant Officers and Senior Non-Commissioned Officers. The impressive qualities of leadership manifested in his keen sense of duty, intelligence, and fitness recommended him to face the Special Selection Board at which the late General Sir Lashmer Whistler, C.M.G., D.S.O., O.B.E., M.C., then Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal West African Frontier Force was chairman.
  • 1930
    Age 9
    Born on March 8, 1930.
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