Here Is The Former African President Who Became So Poor And Started Staying In The Slums With His Mother

The story of Strasser, who seized power in a military coup at the age of 25 in 1992 and ruled for four years until he was deposed by the same method, is unusual even by the experience of West African dictatorships.

His improbable rise to executive power and his precipitous fall to roadside penury is a parable of the human consequences of premature kingship.Strasser he was born on 15 September 1966 in Freetown. His father was a teacher, his mother a small-time businesswoman.

After attending the Sierra Leone Grammar School (founded in 1845), he became an army officer, serving in neighbouring Liberia as part of a regional peacekeeping mission, the Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group (ECOMOG).

Valentine Strasser’s life is a typical case of grace to grass.The former Sierra Leonean president is now broke and is accommodated by his mother.Strasser and his clique came of age during the corrupt dictatorships of the 1970s and 1980s, a period when the school system fell apart to such a degree that students took their chairs home so they could be certain to have a seat in class the next day.

Strasser joined the army after high school.He came to power after the Cold War, when the one-superpower world could demand democracy and free markets in return for financial aid–prompting most of the 48 sub-Saharan African nations to try representative government.

Most have failed.Strasser was chosen to rule Sierra Leone, not because he was smart or authoritative but because he was one of the few who actually went to secondary school, and could speak English.

Unfortunately, the educational system in Sierra Leone was so bad that Strasser’s spoken English was weak.Because of Valentine Strasser’s lack of educational polish, he was shy at international gatherings.

He once blew off a meeting with Queen Elizabeth II because he was reportedly too shy.Following his downfall, the UN provided Strasser with a scholarship to study law in England. In high school, Strasser excelled in math and science. He was a previous president who made the decision to return to college. But he left the University of Warwick after just eighteen months.

When Strasser requested protection from England in 2000, they refused. When he tried to enter the Gambia, they refused to let him.The previous head of the nation, now without a home or a country, returned to Sierra Leone in the end, feeling utterly devastated and hopeless.He received very little money as retirement income there and lived in extreme poverty.Because Strasser was making so little money, he made the decision to take a job teaching computer skills to young people at an institute.

After becoming seriously ill in January 2019, Strasser was flown to Ghana to receive medical attention. A blood vessel disease required the removal of a body portion by medical professionals.In July 2021, the homeless former leader returned to Sierra Leone after recovering. He was shocked to learn that President Bio, who had fired him earlier, had given him a house as a gift.

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