Island home of King Naimbana has been forgotten by history
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,
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
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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