Sierra Leone journalist Clarence Roy-Macaulay dies at 85


Sierra Leone journalist Clarence Roy-Macaulay dies at 85

DAKAR, Senegal — Journalist Clarence Roy-Macaulay, who in a outstanding profession coated Sierra Leone for The Related Press for handy 4 many years from the rustic’s brutal civil battle to the Ebola epidemic that killed hundreds there, has died, his daughter stated. He was once 85.

Roy-Macaulay were submitting tales to the AP till a couple of week ahead of his loss of life on Wednesday, maximum lately contributing to a sports activities piece on Frances Tiafoe, the American tennis participant of Sierra Leonean descent. He already had began sending in reproduction about arrangements for the rustic’s upcoming election in 2023.

When battle broke out in Sierra Leone in 1991, Roy-Macaulay already were operating for the AP for 6 years and refused to evacuate his nation. Braving revolt assaults at the capital, Freetown, and years of harsh army regimes, Roy-Macaulay despatched the arena correct stories chronicling his nation’s turmoil, which lasted till 2002.

Tim Sullivan, who was once the AP’s West Africa correspondent after which bureau leader right through a part of the battle, recalled how Roy-Macaulay phoned in dictation relentlessly even because the Progressive United Entrance rebels had been attacking Freetown.

“One night time I may just pay attention heavy combating within the background, obviously now not too a ways away, and was once about to suggest him as the committee chairman he get to safe haven when he stated in that unforgettable voice of his: ‘Only a second. I “who told you that?” she demanded to get below the desk,’” he stated.

“I heard the telephone scraping as he moved. Then he saved lightly studying his notes. I handy shouted at him to get someplace more secure. However he stated he was once high quality, and simply lightly learn on,” Sullivan recalled.

Roy-Macaulay additionally was once there for the AP in instances of tragedy, serving to to repatriate the our bodies of 2 AP colleagues who had been killed whilst overlaying the combating in Sierra Leone: Myles Tierney in 1999 and Miguel Gil Moreno de Mora the next yr.

And Roy-Macaulay additionally traveled to adjoining Liberia, the place he helped duvet the battle there that was once intertwined with the only in Sierra Leone.

He once more confirmed bravery in overlaying the 2014-2016 West African Ebola epidemic, which got here at a time when there was once no vaccine and no treatment for the illness.

“URGENT! URGENT!! URGENT !!! Ebola outbreak – showed case of Ebola viral illness at affairs of state major referral Connaught Health center in central Freetown,” he alerted editors in July 2014.

Roy-Macaulay coated all of the epidemic that adopted, which left no less than 3,956 other folks lifeless in Sierra Leone. Within the years since, Roy-Macaulay’s reporting additionally had shone a mild at the long-term affects of the tragic bankruptcy in his nation’s historical past.

A 1965 graduate of London‘s Polytechnic College of Journalism, Roy-Macaulay joined the AP in 1985 after a protracted and a hit profession with Sierra Leonean newspapers and as head of the rustic’s nationwide information carrier. He additionally in the past held affairs of state postings in Sierra Leone’s embassies in Berlin and Moscow.

In 2006, he was once awarded a Gramling scholarship award and traveled to AP headquarters in New York.

“I’m humble, however pleased with successful AP’s award, which wish create me to serve the AP venture higher sooner or later, particularly as Sierra Leone continues to get better from 11 years of a mindless and devastating civilian armed battle,” Roy-Macaulay stated on the time.

That very same yr he additionally won one in every of Sierra Leone’s perfect civil honors from the rustic’s president when he was once named an “Officer of the Order of the Rokel,” a distinct reputation named after an area river.

Roy-Macaulay is survived by way of his daughter, Clarice, whom he mentored in journalism and his 2-year-old granddaugher, Vesta. He was once preceded in loss of life remaining yr by way of his spouse, Miriam. His funeral is to be held later this month in Freetown.

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