Sierra Leone Telegraph: 19 March 2021:
President Bio has this week sacked Joseph Sannoh who is one of the civil society activists brought into the public service, after he won presidential election in 2018 with the aim of helping to bring good governance into his government.
There are reports of a big rift between Mr. Joseph Sannoh who is described as a pro-SLPP Civil Society Activist and State House, after Sannoh called a press conference and accused State House of complicity in alleged corruption taking place at the ministry of education where minister Sengeh is said to have appointed his younger brother to a senior post.
His press conference was held in Freetown at SLAJ’s Office. Sannoh said he has video and audio evidence but is yet to produce that evidence, which has angered State House, prompting the President to sack Joseph Sannoh from his highly paid job at NATCOM.
Many are now saying that this is corruption at State House fighting back. Joseph Sannoh is said to have disappeared from public eye. He has not been seen. The Sierra Leone Telegraph has attempted to contact both Sannoh and State House for comment but to no avail.
This is Sannoh at the press conference apparently talking about what he describes as ‘Corruption with the connivance of top State House officials and Cabinet Ministers.’
The sacking of Joseph Sannoh for interfering into the Ministry of Education is timely. Sannoh happened to be one of the civil rights activists from Kenya who arrived in Sierra Leone and had propelled his way through both the Ernest Bai Koroma and Julius Maada Bio administration in false pretense. He has always used his education project to victimize the education administrations, sometimes the Minister and even the Presidency. His antics has always been to raise the bell on corruption and all those who have given-in to his antics falls under his control.
He is social and a mixer, but a very crafty businessman. He alone is a journalist, an activist, a program manager and now a commissioner. He is very fortunate and has been a very hardworking man towards achieving his goals.
I am sure he did not make his way with the current education Minister. A man of prudence and intelligence in detecting viruses in any system.
At times, during my quiet reflections pertaining to our nation’s persistence economic woes, the lack of basic infrastructural elements, and the lackadaisical approach by successive regimes in fighting the debilitating corrupt practices, I found myself giving up hope, succumbing to the prospect of our nation never being able to untangle itself from this vicious cycle of self-destruction. The current regime came into power under the guise of being corruption crusaders. Time without number, the citizens of our nation were informed by this regime that, our president will always have zero tolerance when it comes to the war against corruption.
However, after almost 3 years in office, with a series of corruption scandals, with cabinet and family members of the president being culpable, we are yet to see any semblance of willingness by this regime to root out corruption in our nation. On the contrary, what we have observed is an intensification of corrupt practices and all out war by regime officials against patriotic citizens who stand in the way of corrupt officials. With the 2018 and 2019 audit reports revealing massive corruption in the scale never to be witnessed in our nation within a such short span, the leadership of ASSL has become a target. Now, here we have Mr. Joseph Sannoh, a patriotic citizen doing his part in fighting corruption, only to find himself in the crosshair of the president’s hitmen. Any reason to believe we will ever develop as a nation?
President Bio’s claims that we should draw a line on widespread corruption and use all the tools available to us to fight it, is becoming like a joke. The sacking of Mr Joseph Sannoh for not only exposing corruption at State House, and nepotism, with Dr Sengeh employing his younger brother flies in the face of enabling the malfeasance of corruption cases that have rocked the Bio government since he was sworn in as the president of the republic of Sierra Leone in 2018. Instead of sticking to his manifesto promises of fighting corruption, he is creating waves in the name of fighting corruption by targeting his political opponents, there by creating a name for himself in the international circles.
If Bio is serious about fighting corruption, which he himself acknowledged is the main drag to the under development in our country, why should some of his ministers make it their mission to target the agents of change like Mr. Joseph Sannoh, and the auditor General Mrs lara Pearce Taylor? This idea of saying Bio, and his government are serious in fighting corruption, you might as well argue he wants us to believe the Moon is made of Swiss Cheese.
So the notion that this president is in the vanguard of fighting corruption is a farce. I don’t buy it. So do the vast majority of Sierra Leoneans. When it comes to his policies and achievements, there is nothing you can point to and say well he tried. What Bio is good at, is to paint his opponents as the agents of corruption. Nothing to do with him and his government.