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How the Krims lost Pujehun

7 October 2022 at 04:09 | 726 views

Do You Know How the Krims lost Pujehun ?

By Kortor Kamara, USA

Intermittent warfare among the coastal peoples of southern Sierra Leone, reached a feverish crescendo with the Jabati wars erupting and expanding into serious conflicts in 1882, which the weakened and feeble hegemon, Gallinas King Jaiah was unable to prevent.

This conflict started as a commercial trading dispute between Jabati of Serabu and Momo KaiKai of Yoni, who sought to establish and expand his palm kernel/produce trading around Yoni, Jeoma and Bandajuma along the Wanjie River.

Momoh Kaikai, a son of a Fula settler born and settled at Yoni, encountered challenges not only with Jabati, whose town lay between Yoni and Bandajuma but also with the Krim inhabitants and Henry Tucker, a trading rival who had settled at Gobaru, just opposite Yoni.

Both Momo Kaikai and Henry Tucker were outsiders with connections to the Krim territory only through their mothers, who were indigenous Krim. With their commercial successes and military power, it was but inevitable for towns and villages to seek their protection. The Krim inhabitants around Pujehun rallied behind Henry Tucker of Gobaru, as they sought to expel the Muslim ‘foreigners’ exemplified by the Fula Momo Kaikai and Momo Jah.

In an effort at protecting Yoni, which was not a stockaded town, Momo Kaikai’s Fula compatriot and warrior exemplar Momo Jah, launched an attack against the Krim town of Pujehun and succeeded in capturing and driving away the Krim chief in 1884/85.

Save for an interregnum, when Paramount Chief Amadu Kaikai of the Panga-Sowa chiefdom was deposed in 1916 and Lahai Swaray appointed as Regent Chief of Pujehun, who was in turn dethroned and Paramount Chief Sam French elected, subsequently resulting in the reelection of the heither to banished Chief in 1925, chieftaincy in the Krim town of Pujehun has been held by the Kaikais and Jahs, both families of Fula heritage.

The picture above, taken four years following the capture of Pujehun town by Momo Jah, includes standing from far right: Momo Jah of Pujehun, Momo Kaikai of Yoni, Governor Hay (seated), Mackavore of Tikonko, Capt. Crawford and Gbana Gumbu of Sahun Malen at Lago ( Makaia’s HQ town ) in 1889.

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