ACC reacts to allegations of corruption in Sierra Leone parliament

Patrick Sandi: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 14 September 2020:

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) notes public reactions and rightful concerns on allegations of corruption within the House of Parliament in Sierra Leone, emanating from the 2019 Perceptions Survey Report commissioned in April, 2020, by the Public Financial Management Consortium led by the Centre for Accountability and Rule of Law (CARL), in which the respondents said, Parliament is the 4th Most Corrupt institution in Sierra Leone and Parliamentarians are the 2nd Most Corrupt persons.

Moreover, our attention has been drawn to an interview granted by a Member of Parliament, Hon. Hindolo M. Gevao, to the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Focus on Africa Programme on Wednesday 9th September, 2020, in which he stated that, to his knowledge there are instances of corruption happening in Parliament.

The Commission wishes to reaffirm to the general public that it had immediately commenced probing into the issue by taking statement from the said Parliamentarian. He confirmed the general claim that Parliamentarians or Parliament is corrupt but did not provide any specifics – names, instances, persons involved, modus operandi – which to us fell short of any meaningful “lead” or helpful evidence.

The investigations will continue and it appears we would have to rely on other sources if we are to make the progress that we desire on this, considering the seriousness of the claim by Hon. Gevao.

In that regard, the Commission is requesting all persons who have paid monies to, or from whom monies have been solicited by any Member(s) of the current Parliament, or Staff of Parliament, in order to approve their Appointments, Institutional Budgets, Legislative Instruments, or such other public service, etc., to make same known to the Anti-Corruption Commission with, where possible reasonable specifics to assist with the investigation.

Reports could be made, in person or anonymously at the Commission’s 3 Gloucester Street, or Lotto Building, Tower Hill offices in Freetown; 10 Bo-Pujehun Drive, Kebbie Town, Bo; Reservation Road, Off Maxwell Khobe Street, Kenema; Mena Hills, Makeni; 27 Conteh Street, Port Loko, and 37 Masingbi Road, in Kono; or on hotlines 077-985-985, 077-986-986, or 515 free on all networks, except Qcell. *WE* assure members of the public full protection of identity where such is required or requested.

In a similar vein, the ACC wishes to inform the public that the investigation into allegations of corruption involving the Clerk of Parliament, Hon. Paran Tarawally and Hon. Ibrahim Tawa Conteh of Constituency 132, it had commenced in November, 2019 is at an advanced stage for conclusion.

The public will be accordingly updated on developments regarding the said investigations. The ACC reassures the general public of its commitment to fight corruption at all levels in Sierra Leone.

About the author

Patrick Sandi is the director of public education and outreach at the Anti-Corruption Commission, Sierra Leone.

8 Comments

  1. The reality is, Mr. Francis Ben Kaifala will go down in history as “the People’s Commissioner” who raised the flag of Sierra Leone by transforming our nation from one of the most corrupt countries in Africa to one of the least corrupt. Within a year, he recovered over $2 million from the “AYAMPI People’s Congress (APC) party which was stolen from the people of Sierra Leone.

    He refused to bend to pressure from the APC and distractors when a rogue journalist tried to blackmail our credible Chief Minister, who was hoping to retaliate for the derogatory term he used to describe the thieves of the destruction APC party. Thankfully, the most hated enemy of the new direction government (Sierra Leone Mining Ltd.) that took them to the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Court for the loss of millions of dollars even denied any illegal transaction between them and the Chief Minister instead of using that opportunity to retaliate and tarnish the image of our government.

    Hopefully, the ACC Czar will not be distracted by some haters and delusion people. Just like in any trial, you will either win or lose some. May the Almighty guide you in your new endeavor.

  2. But the ACC itself is a corrupt institution- everything about it reeks with corruption. The body is a mere smokescreen and a toothless elephant whose only usefulness is blocking the real truth about it bosses being leaked without authority.

  3. Patrick Sandy is a hypocrite and propagandist. Where is he living – in Sierra Leone or somewhere else? His statement is so shallow and lacking in sincerity that only the brain-dead can be sucked in by it. Common sense should have informed him that if the last hope of the people (the Judiciary) is corrupt, no other institution or department is exempt. Is Mr Sandy going through some mental crisis that he cannot recall the missing billions at government departments, revealed by the Auditor-general? What about “China gate “? What about the $1.5 million?

    The nation has to hope that the attention now being given to Parliament is the most potent psychiatric pill which jolts Mr Sandy to get off his backside and do some honest work. We don’t want to hear anymore nonsense from him or his boss, Ben Kaifala. They ought to be reminded that corruption is an incurable disease in our society and we the ordinary people need some opium to ease the pain.

    It has to be unambiguously stated that corruption perpetrated by parliamentarians was quite well and kicking during the Koroma years. I personally know somebody whose northern brothers on the confirmation committee at the time told him “broder bisness nordae nar ya o ,nar for fais sontin”. We need a bloodless revolution to bench both SLPP and APC if we really care about Sierra Leone. Those of us that have become conscious that these two parties are one and the same should help those who are less conscious. It is a moral duty.

  4. Here we go – Time to teach the ACC something of immense value with just a few lines. Ladies and Gentlemen – Its not so important to be serious, as to be serious about important things. Sincerity of purpose starts with an openness of heart,that gradually unfolds and reveals her beauty like a lotus flower preparing to blossom in its peak stages of development. Sincerity is like a sentinel that observes with vigilance, all that one encounters and experiences,and then instills in itself the discipline of an uncompromising ability to tell our stories as they appear,not how we earnestly desire for them to be.

    Your lack of sincerity in your efforts to tackle corruption has always been glaringly clear to many of us.You came to the scene guns blazing,determined not to let anyone found guilty of corruption off the hook,barked for a minute fiercely like an aggressive pit-bull,and then transformed yourselves into little harmless puppies being cuddled by your masters the notorious criminal SLPP.(lol)

    Bravo! SLPP puppies, puppets and dummies relax and keep yourselves busy doing that which is easy so as not to appear somewhat lazy, for we already know the ACC is not only lousy but also delusional and quite silly.(lol)

  5. The ACC might have sprang to action in the light of public concern of corruption by our ELECTED MEMBERS Of PARLIAMENT. If you are doing your job from the outset, as mandated by the Anti Corruption laws of Sierra Leone, I don’t think your sudden woken up from your slumber is anything but another act of public relations exercise. There are all sorts of LAWS in Sierra Leone. Laws that protect the state against corrupt individuals, citizens right, free press, the rule if law, any law that was enacted since the dawn of time to make the state function correctly, both for itself and its citizens. We have enough laws that covers every aspects of life in Sierra Leone.

    The problem we have is the WILL POWER TO IMPLEMENT THE LAWS. This MP that went on the BBC focus on Africa programme and said there is corruption in the Wells of Parliament, knows what he is talking about. Because he has a ringside seat to the action. I bet he regrets going public because president Bio is seeing red, and is breathing on the shoulders of Ben Khalifa and urging him to take action against this MP that has gone rogue. I came back to my same point, if president Bio’s government is SERIOUS about removing this cancer we call CORRUPTION, he has to lead by example.

    So far his efforts or the lack of it, has left much to be desired. We want a president like Buhari of Nigeria, the Rwandan president. These two leaders have made corruption an occupational hazard for would be corrupt public officials. They say what they mean and meant what they say. There is no half way house. CORRUPTION IS A NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUE. I think the ACC should be reconstituted, and start all over again.

  6. This statement makes NO SENSE to me. Set a thief to catch a thief. What do you expect? What does the ACC want to say to me? It’s all utter BUNKUM. Let’s wait till the shit hits the Fan. Damage control by the ACC won’t fly in my view. God bless Hon Hindolo Gevao, a true SLPP party champion and patriot.

  7. Hahaha, ACC, a toothless bulldog, that can only bite with precision when powerless citizens in the likes of teachers, lecturers and members of the opposition are accused of corruption, is at it again pretentiously perambulating on national media with a guise of gaining some aspect of relevance. What makes you think the citizens of Salone will buy into your braggadocio of taking on the ‘untouchable sitting parliamentarian body’, if you couldn’t even take on a single sitting minister accused of misappropriating 50,000 bags of rice meant for school kids?

    A classical case of what is describe in our local parlance, ‘BA YAN FAKI’ ( it’s all fake or boastful). In other words, it’s nothing but empty rhetoric!!

  8. “Parliament is the 4th Most Corrupt institution in Sierra Leone and Parliamentarians are the 2nd Most Corrupt persons.” THIS STATEMENT DOES NOT MAKE SENSE TO ME.

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