Sierra Leone Telegraph: 27 February 2021:
The High Court in Bo, Southern Sierra Leone, presided by Justice A.T. Ganda, on Thursday, 25th February 2021, convicted Bockarie Sheku Mattia – a Supervisor on contract with Statistics Sierra Leone’s Bo office on one count of soliciting an advantage, contrary to Section 28(2) of the Anti-corruption Act No. 12 of 2008 as amended by the Anti-Corruption Act No.9 of 2019.
Justice Ganda ordered Bockarie Sheku Mattia to pay a fine of Fifty million Leones (Le: 50,000,000) within a period of one month, effective from Thursday 25th February 2021, or serve a five-year jail term.
According to the particulars of offence presented by the ACC prosecutor, between 1st and 3rd June 2020, in Bo, Southern Sierra Leone, Bockarie Sheku Mattia while on a verification exercise for the World Bank supported Social Safety Net (SSN) programme, which was meant to alleviate poverty among the poorest of Sierra Leoneans, solicited the sum of One Hundred Thousand Leones from a potential beneficiary of the programme.
“The Commission wishes to further reassure the general public of its relentless commitment to controlling corruption at all levels in Sierra Leone,” says the ACC.
Like seriously, this is just a face washing tactics. What about the first lady who have chopped $3 million? What about the so called chief minister? What about even the president? This is purely selective justice. I have no confidence in this government and it copula. The ACC boss is just a piece of mess. Politics in Sierra Leone today, is just so sad.
Thanks Mr Mansaray, I respect your opinion. I hope we agree to disagree. Yes sometimes self reliance is good. Indeed when I visited the North and saw the state of our road that leads to my village, where vehicles spend the night because of the bad state the road was in. I encouraged some of my family members and youths in the village to at least put some stones in one of the crossings to make it more useable. As I pointed out to them do not expect any government minister visiting this neck of the wood to be spending the night here. And we did. Yes, self help is good to foster community sprit and assistance, to help out our communities. But at the same time, government intervention will augment well to lessen the disparities that exist in our communities.
This is good news. I hope when others see people convicted of corruption actually going to prison, instead of just imposing just one of the provisions in the Anti Corruption Act of 2008,according to which PART IV OF OFFENCES, of the Act clearly states, on subsection part 3: A person guilty of an offence under subsection (1)Shall be liable on conviction to a fine not less than thirty million Leones or to imprisonment for a term not less than 3 years or to both such fine and imprisonment. I think for far too long the ACC and the courts have been linient in handling these corruption cases. Corruption is damaging to all of us. And it affects each one of us. Make no mistake about that.
It erodes public confidence, and worst elected public officials think its their birth right to steal from the state without incurring any punishment for their reprehensible acts. In few months time we shall be celebrating our country’s independence with nothing to show for it, in a way of development. If Prime minister Sir Milton, Christopher Elnathan Okoro Cole former Governor – General, VP C. A. Kamara-Taylor, and those that advocated for independence were to wake from the dead, they will be surprised how little has changed since all those years ago. We need to draw a line on corruption, so we don’t spend the next sixty years talking about the same cancer of corruption.The ACC has the powers given to them by constitutional Act. And they should use the Anti Corruption Act to fight it, regardless of which position you are in government. They are not breaking any law, the law breakers are our corrupt politicians.
Mediocrity and the ACC are jointly connected at the heart of critical issues of Corruption like inseparable Siamese twins; One cannot help but to laugh in disbelief upon hearing about the underperforming ACC’s paltry and flimsy achievements.(lol) Patriots – You must now become like vigilant sentries on a high Tower fully alert, do not allow any intoxicating news disguising the ACC’s ignominious failures to enter your SOBER discerning ears.(lol)