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Auditor General Should Resign! PDF Print E-mail
Arts & Culture
Written by Elias L. Bangura - +23278326422/elbangura@gmail.com   
Wednesday, 11 February 2015 12:21

Sierra Leone’s the land where everything is possible, including getting away with the law. Justice, plus freedom and unity too, is in short supply here.

  And that’s not a bother to many people, including our Parliament, who are cold and hot when they chose, and often wave away the destiny of their compatriots without due diligence or being bothered one bit.

  Don’t cry, and don’t lose hope either, but look up because our salvation as a nation draws near, because the darkest hour forebodes dawn, the dawn of our redemption and glory.

  But till then, the blasting will carry on, including turning on the heat on those who take up responsibilities to serve us. Their sincerity will have to be tried by fire, to burn off every chaff and insincerity.

  It is galling, if you should know, to have to put up with people who feign patriotism, and duty, when they are damn scoundrels, damn money gluts.

  You see, and do so clearly please, we have a lot too who are just selfless, people who, like the bee, knows their duty and stick to it like glue.

  Oh, comrade…I met a man once, years ago, who said the saddest thing anyone would have to put up with is having others pull down what you have so painstakingly built up.

  This reality is being replayed every day, and year by year in Sierra Leone – a few are building up while one thousand besides are tearing down, without apology, and passing away unduly as the real heroes.

  I have never met the auditor general of Sierra Leone, on an individual basis, excepting once two years back at a function when her institution funded the entity I was heading. The funding runs into millions of Leones, plus the invaluable dedication of her staff to make the program a success.

  She was on leave at the time, but she came to be a part of the program – a program that Parliament frowned at and ensured it came to nothing.

  The 51-member strong Sierra Leone Parliamentary Press Gallery got a two-day intensive training on reporting on the budget, plus an insider view of how the auditor general’s office works in terms of auditing the accounts of all public institutions.

  But alas, a week later Parliament threw out every Gallery journalist during its sittings on the Appropriation Act regarding the monies it was going to approve for MDAs, quoting their parliamentary Standing Orders to back their action.

  As head of the Press Gallery, I shook my head at the time and still does today – because here was an opportunity the auditor general had seized in training the media to know and report on the leakages of monies from our consolidated fund, but Parliament didn’t see it that way except that journalists were nosy folks, or they were unqualified to be witnesses of the prevalent and unnecessary mess that is so evident in almost every MDA, including the Office of the President and the Vice President.

  The same mess continues year by year, and year by year, untiringly, the poor auditor general and her dedicated staff keep pointing out the flaws in how our monies are being misused and wasted, with no one saying phin!

  I think the auditor general should resign, and leave the rotten mess called the economy of Sierra Leone, mismanaged and raped by people who call themselves the saviours of the nation.

  Really, I don’t want to believe that if she refuses to resign I can call her a system woman, a yes lady sort of, whose primary aim is the weight of her purse. This woman smacks of sincerity and commitment, and I like her for it. Darn, just take a glimpse of the recent 2013 Auditor General Report, and hear her plaintive voice against those who wrecks and continues to wreck the system, people who would later pass off lightly before the parliamentary public accounts committee. I don’t know why.

  True, others like her have done remarkably well, but unless they team up with the Auditor General and share her zeal to redeem Sierra Leone of corruption, we will be tied down forever on the bottom rung of the human development index.

  And it is sickening to read her reports with its now famous refrain that ‘certain documents were unavailable for inspection,’ et al. Don’t you feel like going through town with an atomic bomb and wiping out everything called a government? Lord! What disservice greets us every day! What disloyalty to the emblem of unity, freedom, and justice! ‘Two-face,’ isn’t that what others call it? And, my dear God, this devilish hardihood has been in play since when, and since when no one cares!

  Look around, and see the resignation in the eyes of people, the apparent helplessness and our lack of redress of our concerns and grief. Like the wretched followers of Spartacus, freedom and rest is still a far frontier for us.

  Well, the template, or the blueprint, of a better country is with us and has been with us for ages, but there’s only half-hearted commitment to it. The available that people are calling the best now isn’t actually the best; and this ‘best’ will be with us if we don’t request anything better.

  Those, however, who should make this needful request, are busy fighting themselves, and still call themselves the opposition parties of Sierra Leone.

  I think this sorry lot called the opposition in Sierra Leone is at best a rotten tooth that can’t chew anything relevant, except to drink milk, stale milk at that! They don’t even know the expiry date on their labels has been wiped out with gifts and tokens; all we have now is their shadows, black and long as the filth at Bomeh Dump Site.

  It is revealing too, that civil society has little to say when it comes to the yearly auditor general’s report – it is mostly the media, going about as the lone voice in the wilderness, that is always raising the concerns. Why is that so?

  We are hopeful, will be hopeful, until the time when all of us will think enough is enough and decide to chase the villains out of town, those who think Sierra Leone is a virgin to be raped. The long arm of the law and of Time is drawing nearer; we know it is a showdown they won’t cherish. Who cares!

 

Editorial

2016 Global Peace Conference to be held in Freetown---as IPRA 50th Birthday confab ends in Istanbul

 

The 26th biennal conference of the Internatonal Peace Research Association (IPRA) is billed to take place in  Freetown, Sierra Leone in November 2016, marking the second time Africa has hosted the conference since the founding of IPRA in 1964. This was announced following the re-election of  the two IPRA Secretaries-general, Dr Ibrahim Seaga Shaw (pictured) and Dr Nesrin Kenar, who co-ordinated the 25th  IPRA conference in Turkey,  at the organisation’s administrative meeting on August 14 during the 25th  IPRA  conference in Istanbul  to serve a second term of two years.

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Business News

ACC CAPACITATES SIERRA LEONE COMMERCIAL BANK STAFF ON ANTI-BRIBERY AND ANTI-CORRUPTION ISSUES

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on the request of the Management of the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank (SLCB) on Thursday 20th July, 2017 commenced anti- bribery and anti-corruption training with staff of the Bank.

The training which was held in the Bank's Conference Room 9th Floor, Christian Smith Building 29/31 Siaka Stevens Street, Freetown attracted over twenty members of the Executive Management.

Addressing colleagues, the Managing Director, SLCB, Idrissa Aloma Kamara disclosed that the Bank has integrated into the Bank's operations anti-corruption measures, such as the development of anti-corruption policy, anti-graft messages inscribed on Bank Statements and sensitization of staff on the dangers of corruption. With all these, the MD stated, it is the view of the Bank that the ACC which is the statutory body responsible for the campaign against corruption be brought in, to provide awareness training on anti-bribery issues for an efficient and effective banking system.

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Media News

Two veteran Journalists, now in the United States have paid a courtesy call on Sierra Leone's Ambassador

Two very respected and veteran Journalists who are in the United States of America for various reasons have called on Sierra Leone’s Amr. Bockari Kortu Stevens not only to appreciate the work of the Embassy, but also to pay courtesy as protocol demands.

Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson, former Lecturer Fourah Bay College, former Director of Information Ministry of Information and Communications, Former Director Sierra Leone News Agency (SLENA), Former Chairman Independent Media Commission (IMC) and stringer French News Agency  etc. is on vacation and Mr. Cyril Juxon Smith Director Information and Communications House of Parliament, former Acting Director General Sierra Leone Broadcasting Service (SLBS) and former UNESCO Media Consultant  is in the United States of America to attend the funeral of his father.

Speaking at the Ambassador’s residence on 4821 Colorado Avenue, Washington DC  Mr. Rod Mac-Johnson said “Thank  you Amr. Stevens for accommodating us in the middle of your tight schedule, and also to discuss with us in a homely spirit.

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Commentary

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT

A PASSIONATE LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT:  44TH EDITION

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT
 Your Excellency Sir,
 It’s been six months since I subscribed to my usual publications of this piece. And this is primarily because I have been out of the country for the entire period, and as such would not normally objectively tender a subscription. I do apologize to my readers for this. So having being in Monrovia, Liberia for the recently concluded ECOWAS Summit, I would like to do some analysis on such a historic august body and gathering of this sub-Saharan/West African region.
 
In resume, among other crucial achievements, ECOWAS, through its military apparatus, ECOMOG, played very sacrificial and invaluable roles in bringing peace, security and democratic governance to both Sierra Leone and Liberia during their past civil wars, and most recently ensuring that the Gambian people’s democratic change of government from the notorious dictatorial twenty seven years regime of Yaya Jarmeh, to the current government of President Adama Barrow, through their tactical robust intervention, overseen by President Helen JohnsonSirleaf of Liberia and other ECOWAS Presidents/actors, was enforced. Furthermore, ECOWAS has also spearheaded the enactment of several socio-political, advocacy and economic treaties in the sub region.
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View Point

WHY SIERRA LEONEANS HATE PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT

Honestly speaking Sierra Leoneans are well known for their hospitality all over the world, especially in Africa. But ironically many of them hate each other. But they love foreigners. They have high respect for strangers. But unfortunately they do not have respect among themselves. You can attest this to what is happening in the social media. Where they are showing their pull him down (PhD) syndrome. By castigating their compatriots unnecessarily. Some of them just because of jealousy and envious evil spirit they possess. They prefer to promote foreigners than their own brothers and sisters both in and out of the country.

Day in day out they are insulting each other.They are using all sorts of vulgar languages against each other. And even their own highly respected president in the world, President Ernest Bai Koroma they are insulting him openly. Therefore, it is an open secret that many Sierra Leoneans are not well cultured.

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News - Press Release

Regent village head calls on LAB to tackle domestic violence

The village head for Regent, Ms. Jokomie Browne has called on the Legal Aid Board to help curb the increase in incidence of domestic violence in the Regent Community in the outskirts of the capital Freetown.

Ms. Browne wants the Board to hold outreach events in the village to educate the people on issues of law relating to domestic violence, gender, women’s rights, redress mechanisms and support services for victims.

‘We want to benefit from the Legal Aid Board’s Legal Empowerment Programme because there is an urgent need for one in the community,’ Ms. Browne told the Executive Director of the Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles on the phone. ‘The situation is desperate. I am afraid if you do not come in now the situation could spiral out of control.’

The call follows series of referral of victims of domestic violence to the Legal Aid Board office in Freetown. The latest victim sent to the Board is one Baindu who was battered by her boyfriend Borbor Abu in the presence of their one year old son.

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Society -Local News

China-Aid Agricultural Technical Cooperation Project hand over Agriculture Materials to the Ministry of Agriculture

On  21st July ,2017 at a handing over ceremony held at Ogoo Farm in Freetown, China-Aid Agricultural Technical Cooperation Project Team handed agricultural materials to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security (MAFFS). 

The items include seed rice, maize, agro chemicals, fertilizer, pesticides and power tillers for farmers within the western area district. Dignitaries present included The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, and Food security Prof. Monty Jones and his entourage ,  Mr Shen Xiaokai, the Economic and Commercial Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone, the District agricultural officer, the Chinese technical team, National federation of farmers Sierra Leone representative and lot of farmers in the western Area.

During his statement, Mr Shen said for over 40 years China has been fulfilling its commitment to Sierra Leone with regard the agricultural technical cooperation project.

He said China will continue to assist Sierra Leone in its developmental strides by providing technical support and assistance and by also providing training to help develop the human resource capacity of the workforce.

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Development

30 Staff of the Ministry of Finance & Economic Development will go China for Seminar on Economic Planning

Thirty (30) staff of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development will depart the shore of Freetown to China on 14th August 2017. The purpose of their trip is to attend a seminar on Medium and Long-Term Economic planning for Sierra Leone. The National Development and Reform Commission of China will organize the seminar from 16th August to 7th September 2017 in the capital city of Beijing, People’s Republic of China.

The Economic and Commercial Counsellor of the Chinese Embassy in Freetown, Mr. Shen Xiaokai met with the 30 participants at the Conference Room of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MOFED) on 2rd August 2017. In his remarks he told the participants that in December 2016, His Excellency the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma and the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Mr. Momodu Kargbo visited China, where they had high level bilateral meetings with Chinese Government Officials. 

He said this seminar is as a result of those meetings. “When China makes a commitment, China will fulfil it” he reiterated. He said The Ministry of Finance is one of the most important ministries in this country, therefore this seminar was designed specifically to meet the needs of the ministry.

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Politics

News from China, June 28th: Youth Affairs Minister addresses 2017 Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation in Capacity Development in Beijing, China
Sierra Leone’s Minister of Youth Affairs has said, the 2017 Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation in Capacity Development hosted by the Chinese government should help enhance the ties of friendship and foster the wheels of bilateral cooperation between the two nations and particularly strengthen cooperation in the field of human resource development.
 
Hon. Bai Mamoud Bangura spoke on Wednesday, 28th June, 2017, at the start of the week long Ministerial Workshop on International Cooperation, which has brought together participants from various countries, including eight (8) from Sierra Leone.
 
According to minister Bangura, in line with the spirit of friendship and cooperation, the event could serve as an opportunity to jointly define new strategic directions in Sierra Leone’s ties with China and in opening up another episode of friendship and cooperation between the two.
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