Sierra Leone removes British names from streets





As the UK marks 200 years since it abolished the slave trade, Sierra Leone has decided to purge its capital, Freetown, of streets named after the British and replace them with the names of Africans who fought in the abolition movement.

Freetown, as its name implies, was founded in 1787 as a home for freed slaves and many residents have welcomed the move to recognise African heroes on its streets.

"Since the British came and went, they have done nothing for us after slavery. All their names are on the streets. You come into Freetown you see them, the only street with an African name is Siaka Stevens street," says resident Sammy Conteh.

Mohamed Bobson-Kamara, chairman of the city's planning committee for the bicentenary, says the role of black abolitionists has been greatly underplayed.

He hopes this will be partly rectified by changing the street names.




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