Former ACC Commissioner praises President Koroma
Sierra Leone’s former Anti-Corruption Commissioner, Mr Abdul Tejan-Cole, has in a panel discussion at the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary said that President Ernest Bai Koroma at no time during his tenure interfered with his work.
Speaking during a panel discussion on the theme, “How can political WILL overcome bureaucratic WON’T” Mr. Tejan-Cole said that political will was a necessary precondition for any effective anti-corruption campaign. He noted that without the necessary political will government’s statement about the fight against corruption and transparency and accountability will be empty rhetoric.
Mr. Tejan-Cole, who is now Africa Regional Director at Open Society, further stated that in many countries reference to political will was simply interpreted as reference to the will of the President or the executive. He quoted a definition of “Political willâ€, and said it referred to the demonstrated credible intent of political actors (elected or appointed leaders, civil society watchdogs, stakeholder groups, etc.) to attack perceived causes or effects of corruption at a systemic level. He stated that the will of everyone in the society was needed if the fight against corruption was going to succeed. He commended President Koroma and Parliament for their courage in enacting the Anti-Corruption Act 2008 and the National Anti-Corruption Strategy.
Other members of the panel included Vaira VÄke-Freiberga, PhD, who was President of the Republic of Latvia from 1999-2007 and was most recently a candidate to fill the inaugural position of President of Europe and Hadeel Qazzaz, ED, who is a specialist in education, gender, and development and has published research reports on development, gender equality, feminization of poverty, gender budgeting and has contributed to various human development and poverty reports in Palestine. The discussion was chaired by Fredrik Galtung, Chief Executive of TIRI.
by Trevor Sandi
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