• October 24, 2023

Politicians Identical to Corruption

Politicians Identical to Corruption
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By Donstance Koroma

Just as you can separate a bullet from its gun except by smartly pulling the trigger before a bullet and a gun can be parted. Similarly this is certainly how Sierra Leone politicians can hardly divorce from cancer of public sector corruption.

This is so because the true meaning of national politics in Sierra Leone is that politicians’ push for satisfactions of their selfish considerations using the majority as baits to achieve their interest, wishes and aspirations.

This prevailing circumstance remains one among key factors militating against the current impoverish state the nation present find its self since independent.

Despites the advent of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to mitigate corruption, not much positive effects are being felt towards the fight against corruption across the country from the legislative fronts.

Enacting the laws is one but aggressive implementation or enforcement of the laws speaks volume to the level of seriousness the government place on the fight against corruption by the Bio led administration.

Periodic national audit reports yearly unveiled ugly revelations about the ways and manners in which public monies meant for the development of the state are being embezzled by politicians who shamelessly converted such proceeds to theirs.

The unwillingness of the fifth and Sixth Parliament of the Second Republic of Sierra Leone to debate and bring durable solutions and recommendations of the Audit Service Sierra Leone into actions could be viewed as a silence way of aiding and abating corrupt practices.

On the divergent, debating and making strong recommendations on ministries, departments and agencies that are found wanting by the audit reports would have gone long way to tackle corruption revealed or exposed by the supreme audit service institution of the state.

However, it goes without saying that the deliberate refusal by the Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Parliament of the Republic of Sierra Leone to debate and make punitive recommendations on annual audited reports of the Sierra Leone’s Audit Service  submitted to parliament indicated that the country’s legislative arm of government is deeply in love with corruption diplomatically.

This also pointed to the facts why Hon. Ibrahim Tawah Conteh and Hon. Hindolo Geavo the ruling Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) publicly let the cat out of the bag in both national and international media that indeed Sierra Leone’s parliament is corrupt.

To many Sierra Leoneans, the said disclosure by the two young legislators of the incumbent SLPP was a surprise but for those that are familiar with the operations of the House of Parliament, the two vibrant MPs spoke truth to power.

Since the birth of the Audit Service Sierra Leone to date monies misappropriated by ministries, departments and agencies continues to be skyrocketed which has been attributed to the unwillingness of parliament to debate and bring forward recommendations to debar politicians and some Civil Servants from the old tricks.

Paradoxically, the New Direction administration waged war on corruption by instituting Commissions of Inquiry in 2019 with huge state resources lavished on the said commission.

From the realities on the ground, President Bio has traded the CIO report and recommendations for political compensation for selfishly imposing himself as winner of the June 24 presidential election, thereby rendering the COI report and recommendations waterish and of no effect.

The action of President Bio speaks clearly that all eighty-four (84) persons of interest found wanting by the COI will and continues to enjoy impunity to the detriment of the poor and venerable Sierra Leoneans.

The former president, Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma after gaining state authority also constituted a COIs on the late Tejan Kabbah’s “Sababu Education” project as millions of Leones were embezzled by former ministers and other high profiled personalities of the Tejan Kabbah government.

A White Paper and recommendations was also made public by the Ernest Bai Koroma’s government, surprisingly, the former president deliberately refused to action those recommendations.

According to the former president, he refused to implement the recommendations for the sake of peace and national cohesion.

Those set of politicians that were indicted and found wanting for gross corruption also walked free from all charges without single cent returned to the state, a win for those persons of interest but a big lost to the state.

Since the ACC Commissioner, Francis Ben Kelfala Esq took over, the country is yet to witness any indictment made to state officials serving in the Bio government regardless of the abysmal corruption and misappropriation of state resources unearth by the country’s supreme audit institution’s annual reports.

This cannot be unconnected to the reason why the opposition and Civil Society Organizations continues to refer to President Bio’s fight against corruption as a one sided-fight targeting the opposition whiles his ministers and other presidential appointees busy swimming in corruption.

Many Sierra Leoneans continues to ponder why President Bio once said that his COIs will be the last when the Fifth Parliament of the Second Republic of Sierra Leone had legislated commission of inquiry as a must after any change of government.

Coming from an unbiased point of view, it is very obvious that since the arrival of democracy in the country past and present governments has vow fully failed and continue to fail in the corruption fight that many of them  vowed to defeat.

Therefore, one will commit no sin to predict that Sierra Leone may lose the war against corruption that like the war against garbage that the country continues to fight from the losing side.

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