Corruption fights back in Sierra Leone 

Lamin Costo Daramy: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 9 October 2020:

One question that always linger in my mind, and I have tried on a number of times to figure it out, are the challenges Sierra Leone is faced with – issues that we discuss on our various social media platforms. The citizens are aware about the issues. These issues are discussed everyday be it with families, friends and colleagues: Poor healthcare system, poor infrastructure, poor electricity and poor schools, etc.

When His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio was inaugurated in 2018, he made a promise to fight corruption and to revamp the economy which was close to the brink of collapse under the APC with former President Ernest Bai Koroma at the helm. A troubling challenge is corruption. Corruption seems rooted in the citizens everyday life; in offices, in schools, markets on the streets, in homes, agencies and government institutions, the list is endless.

Now let us all take a minute to look at the question, eat it, swallow it or spit it out if you like. What are we going to do when corruption fights back? Bear in mind corruption which undermines our democracy, peace and stability is a bane to the development of our country, Sierra Leone. This predicament has exposed us all to the things we fear may happen to us. Things like armed banditry, civil unrest, money laundering.

Corruption has deterred  progress and development in Sierra Leone.  It is because of corruption that our hospitals lack the equipment they need to perform well, it is because of corruption the life expectancy rate is low, it is because of corruption we still have roads that are killing us and our schools are poor. It is because of corruption that basic necessities have become a luxury.

That is why the Anti-Corruption Commission Boss, Francis Ben Kaifala at the 1st African Anti-Corruption Forum said “I bring you greetings from Sierra Leone; a country that epitomizes the full brunt of decades of corruption; but is now more determined than ever before to fight corruption under the leadership of His Excellency, President Rtd. Julius Maada Bio, whose roadmap to victory against corruption and economic development blueprint are predicated on the pillars of conscientious anti-corruption reform and campaign”.

When I think about the real fight corruption is waging against the people of Sierra Leone, I think about the lawlessness and recklessness demonstrated by some youths – for example in Makeni who yesterday prevented Anti-corruption officials from interviewing the former President on corruption allegations.

According to the ACC Boss, on their way to Makeni, “our work to cleanse Sierra Leone of corruption continues in Makeni today; but some of our compatriots have hijacked the highway to prevent us from interviewing former President Koroma. They have deployed roadblocks and violence”.

When I think about some youths burning down health centres and breaking police station windows, youths trying to prevent the ministry of energy from moving standby machines from Makeni to Port Loko – what comes to mind is – this is corruption fighting back.

The ACC as an anti-corruption body has been doing a fantastic job in keeping the media and citizens abreast with their work, but also canvassing the support of every Sierra Leonean to fight this monster – corruption. (Photo: ACC Czar – Francis Ben Kaifala).

Fight against corruption collectively will not only help us galvanise force, strength and resources together but will also help us get victory as Sierra Leoneans.

I always recall the African parable our parents would say to stress the need for unity and be each other’s keeper: “The danger of not working together leads to destruction as life would knock us down one after the other.”

When corruption fights back, I think about those who ravaged our country with impunity, parading on social media  accusing the government and the ACC of witch-hunting. I also think about those youths who came out to cause havoc for example in Lunsar, Tombo and Makeni.

When the monster corruption fights back, we all become victims, be you SLPP, APC, NGC, C4C or PMDC. When the monster corruption fights back, it knows no boundary, be you in the south, north, east or west of Sierra Leone. When the monster corruption fights back, be you young, old, rich or poor – suffers.

Why not pledge your love and loyalty to your country Sierra Leone today, so we can all work together to defeat corruption.

6 Comments

  1. Sierra Leoneans seems flabbergasted, the people can’t even distinguish between right and wrong. Am afraid, do Sierra Leoneans really think the current drama unfolding in the country is really a fight against corruption? No it’s not – just a pappy-show. How can an indiscipline man/ woman discipline his/ her kids? Let me expand it further, how do you expect a corrupt man/woman to fight corruption when himself is submerged in huge financial malpractice? Sierra Leoneans please learn to call a spade a spade – if you are not credible, you not credible. For the bible says that if you are without sin of corruption cast the first stone.

    So is the current regime corruption free? Does Bio really have any financial Moral high ground to even talk about corruption at all? Because his awful malpractice records are still very fresh in our minds. Is Bio really a proper person that is fit for purpose in the community of civilised nations? Is Bio a respecter of human rights? Is Bio a good president for Sierra Leone? Is Bio a respecter of the rule of law and order? Is Sierra Leone as a country peaceful? Has Bio and his henchmen of out dated so-called PHDs brought any difference in your life today? Look, Sierra Leone is today fragmented and divided as a country, and is deeply in trouble, but the ordinary man in the Streets of Freetown, Kenema, Bo, Makeni, and kabala may likely not understand my opinion.

    But the current political theatre unfolding in Sierra Leone today is just the tip of the iceberg. It’s not about fighting corruption at all, its just about exercising hypocrisy and squaring up and projecting who is more powerful while the common man die of starvation all around the country. I rest my case. Advice for you to ponder with the above statement, for posterity shall visit and judge all those who continue to support lawlessness and disorder in the country. It’s time for men of great courage and values to arise and stop this useless brutality and bruhaha once and for all.

  2. When I watched the video clip of the event in Makeni, I concluded after seeing most of the houses leading to the residence of the lifetime leader of the APC, that the lives of our citizens have been violated. I believe that every adult has experienced that violation at least once when a thief stole something from you which is precious and has sentimental value. With the type of awareness and passion that our current ACC commissioner is displaying, the average Sierra Leonean will start fighting back against these thieves just to protect and preserve what belongs to them.

    The international community has sacrificed lives and resources to transform our country into a peaceful and democratic nation, and we are a perfect example that the UN always uses when it comes to peace building. With the help of the international community, the lifetime chairman and his cohorts will definitely lose this corruption fight against the people of Sierra Leone. May the Almighty continue to bless and protect our ACC commissioner.

  3. We Sierra Leoneans know corruption is the root cause of all our problems. We ignored it over a long period of time. Sometimes I would say too long. My only hope this new awakening takes us to a different and meaningful destination for our country and people. I don’t know why we are hysterical about it now? We didn’t need a commission of inquiry to tell us our political classes are corrupt to their bones. Even those that are finger pointing with their angelic looks now, are themselves corrupt. So what is new?

    We all know corruption has brought us Tribal, regional, the RUF wars, the environmental damage to our eco system, our health, lack of good roads and above all else the lack of development for a mineral rich country like ours. The fact that we have suddenly woke up to the truth that has always been an open secret, and that corruption is the common enemy facing us as a nation from the 70s, we have to put all our differences aside and come together and figure out how to fight this cancer in our society. At the moment I don’t think president Bio is a honest broker in this fight. So it should not be left to him alone. Otherwise we will end up with selective justice and mob rule the other of the day. And it should not be a one man fight, but a fight for every single person in the country and outside the country . Even the people that are accused of misappropriation of our county’s funds.

    If anything they should lead the way by giving all the information required of them to the ACC, so no one is left in any doubt about what is at stake here. Just like when we as a nation came together to fight off Ebola and now the covid19 pandemic, we should use the same zeal and determination to confront these corrupt political classes. In moments of crisis, citizens of nation states put their differences aside to fight the common enemy. We have it in ourselves to do it. Even our international lenders know this was and remains the key impediment to country’s national development goals. Now that we as nation are faced with this corruption scandal, we have all gone into collective hysteria, some demanding justice and others throwing up a fit. The country can only be united and developed if we beat this common enemy. May God bless Sierra Leone.

  4. See the embattled and confused ACC boss there, thinking of option B for his contact with the greatest former Commander in Chief of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces ever and the “Peoples Commander”, Leader Dr Ernest Bai Koroma. Thank you very much Mr Lamina Costo Daramy for your article. But you can’t fight corruption when you were corrupt in the past and even today. Credibility matters in such a huge national exercise. If you are not credible you are not just credible sir. More importantly, corruption must be fought in parallel with bringing development in the country. Also, you must play a fine line so that political stability, peace and justice is maintained.

    That is not what is happening under the Bio SLPP kakistocracy right now. Are we going to waste 5 bloody years in fighting corruption alone? What about putting food on the table for our people, affordable health care, clean drinking water, post COVID-19 arrangements, etc.? I hope you will help me answer these questions Mr Lamina Costo Daramy. Anyway, God bless you Mr Lamin Costo Daramy.

    • Someone said the other day, that come 2023, they were going to ‘sort out’ Salone into smaller, mafia-style units to finish off what was left in Salone in 2018. I wonder who will be the right candidate for Nimikor? All this chest-thumping is about the optics, but we know, and the guilty are always afraid.

Tell us about your views

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.