Mayor stinks in financial mess …
Some councilors in the Freetown municipality (choosing to be anonymous for now) fear that, Mayor Herbert George Williams (in photo) may soon be scooped into a financial mess.
These councilors made apparent their fear bound on the Mayor’s position following a fortnight confirmation by the Minister of Finance, Dr. Samura Kamara that he had remitted the sum of Le 12.187 billion for the Fiscal Year 2010-2011 into the local council account, complying with the Devolution of Functions Act of 2009.
These councilors claimed among other things that it was in 2008 they last received their quotas from the Freetown City Council. “All the Mayor was still keeping is his ego and roguish life style, yet he suffices reasons that the Ministry of Finance had gone bankrupt to honour the devolution requirement. Now that we are in the knowing that the Ministry of Finance had complied with the requirement, he (the Mayor) needs to account now for such monies,” the angry councilors bemoaned.
City Council sources maintain that Dr. Samura Kamara’s outburst on the issue undressed the Mayor and his administrative clerk as liars, having kept sealed lips over the issue earlier on.
These councilors made unsavory claims among other things that, Mayor Williams had usurped a said allocation of Le 31,421,796 specified in the 2010-2011 Fiscal Year budget for Ward Committees development undertakings.
“We have engaged the Mayor on several occasions in the months gone by to have him to disburse our allocations for the Fiscal Year 2009 through 2011, all he has been playing was his continued reluctance attitude” they state.
“He has many options to be brought to book for financial impropriety, but equally still have field days to capitalize on his Mayoral immunity in the making,” they maintained.
Last week, the local tabloids reported also that the Head of Revenue at the Freetown City Council, Mr. Ojo is to account for Le 47 million adrift a Le 7 million deficit of Tax Revenue incurred on the sales of Local Tax Receipt for the 2010 Fiscal Year.
Sources also claimed that the Revenue Unit of the Freetown City Council is indiscriminately selling Business Licenses to line their pockets with proceeds that supposed to fatten FCC’s revenue basket. Apart from other allegations that the same unit awarded the sales of local council tax receipt to a non deserving candidate in the person of Ramatu Koroma, daughter of the late SAT Koroma, workers of the Freetown City Council say the entire city council composition is in a big rip-off.
Meanwhile, the councilors have reliably informed this medium that, the Mayor’s refusal to disburse their entitlements seeks to interpret nothing, rather say it is a smear campaign of making them (councilors) unpopular in their various constituencies and wards in a way they would not be able to fulfill their developmental undertakings to time
The Mayor and his administrative clerk Bowenson Philips are still to make a public statement on these allegations which they have not done yet.
By M.S Biro and Abu Bakarr Tarawally
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