Written by Hadi Bah    PDF Print E-mail
Island home of King Naimbana has been forgotten by history
News - Discover Sierra Leone

Shrouded by the mists of time and of the Rokel River, Dobana, also called Robana by Europeans, the island home of King Naimbana, dobanahas been forgotten by history. So has Dobaka, known as Robaga by Europeans, not too far from Dobana.

Located at the confluence of the Rokel and Port Loko Rivers, Dobana is today a verdant island whose residents, unaware of its history, survive on gathering firewood, fishing and gardening. Accessible only by the occasional Bullom boat or dugout canoe, many residents long for a diversion of some of the attention Bunce Island is receiving. For without Dobana, the historic events at Bunce Island and Sierra Leone would never have happened.

According to Anna Maria Falconbridge, one of the earliest diarists of Sierra Leone, it was to Dobana that she and her husband Alexander, the Sierra Leone Company's agent in the early 1790s, made several trips to persuade King Naimbana to permit the return of the first Granville Town residents after their settlement was destroyed by hostile Temne. John Clarkson, first governor of Sierra Leone needed the cooperation of King Naimbana of Dobana to make the Nova Scotian exodus to Sierra Leone possible. And according to Christopher Fyfe it was only after King Naimbana affixed his mark to Captain John Taylor's treaty in August 1788 did the Sierra Leone Colony become a legal entity.

Hear some of the views of some of the residents of Dobana Island on sierraleone365 radio on the tunein app.

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