Salone News

One Month of COI - The Emerging Issues

1 March 2019 at 23:27 | 1795 views

One Month of COI - The Emerging Issues


One month after the commissions of inquiry commenced sittings, the curious public is beginning to feel its worth and know its relevance. The red corner critics who initially cried wolf where none existed, are gradually coming to terms with the reality that the institution of democratic accountability has begun to gain traction in Sierra Leone.
The admirable manner in which the sole commissioners have conducted affairs so far has convinced even the naysayers that their fears and apprehensions were mere figments of their imagination. The openness of the sessions and impartiality of the judges are features that have elicited applause from within and without. The finesse with which the judges allayed the initial fears of past government officials has drawn admiration from even persons of interest, and the thought of non compliance has given way to cooperation.

One month after the COI, some disquieting questions that had wagged in tongues over the years are getting clues. Some issues that were obvious have been expounded on and the truth about them is painstakingly peeping, hopeful of coming out sooner rather than later.

As the country braces for a long unknown end to this conundrum, here are some highlights worth pondering over;
√ Unsecured loans by politically exposed persons strangulated the operations of the SLCB.
√ The Ebola funds management demands more explanations than given so far.
√ Why did KPMG pull out of the contract to provide fiduciary and procurement management systems for Ebola funds.
√ Sole sourcing during the Ebola epidemic created its own brand of problems and undermined probity.
√ 20 or 16 ambulances? Who is saying what?
√ Fertiliser technical specifications and over invoicing.
√ Bizzare disappearance of large quantities of fertiliser in MAF’s stores.
√ HFC/CMB and the shady land transactions. How did former ministers receive monies for the purchase of land when they were not members of land owning families?
√ Was there any connivance between HFC/CMB and some former top government officials?

These and several other issues have emerged after the first month of the COI.
God bless the New Direction.

Photo: The Chief Justice of Sierra Leone and judges of the Commissions of Inquiry