A ceremonial parade through the streets of Freetown and a Mayoral reception attended by Prime Minister Dr.
GV March through streets of Fretown. (2 shots)
GV Ruling party members in March-past.
TV PAN and GV various organisations march through streets (2 shots)
SV Mayor D.T. Akibe-Betts and Aldermen and Councillors stand by gate to welcome guests.
GV March past.
MV Mayor welcomes President Stevens and introduces him with wife to councillors (2 shots)
GV Guests inside park
MV President and Mayor meat guests.
MV PAN guests.
SCU Plates of snacks.
GV Guests helping themselves to snacks.
SCU Ministers of Religion look on.
GV Guests helping themselves to food.
Initials CO.16.40 CM/DW/CO/16.53
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A ceremonial parade through the streets of Freetown and a Mayoral reception attended by Prime Minister Dr. Siaka Stevens and his wife marked the end of the celebrations i Sierra Leone of the tenth anniversary of Independence.
Sierra Leone became a sovereign and independent member state of the Commonwealth on April 27, 1961.
On April 19, 1971, Prime Minister Dr. Siaka Stevens declared the country a Republic, and with the approval of Parliament he was sworn in on the 21st. as first Executive President. Dr. Stevens says Sierra Leone will stay in the Commonwealth and pursue a non-alignment policy. (a repercussion to the taking of the new powers is covered in our production no. 4461/71, which deals with the resignation of the Sierra Leone ambassador to the U.S. Mr. John Akar, on the 22nd April).
The New York Times on April 28th. characterised recent moves as establishing a "virtual dictatorship" in Freetown, and criticised Dr. Stevens for calling in troops from neighbouring Guinea last September to serve as his security guard, after an abortive coup.