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Does NASSIT really need another DG?

Does NASSIT really need another DG?

Several newspapers have started publishing a full page vacancy announcement for the position of Director General at NASSIT (National Social Security and Insurance Trust).  Applicants must be above the age of 45.  When NASSIT was established in 2001, a Ghanaian national, Eric Adjei was appointed as Director General.  His deputy was a Sierra Leonean called Sidikie Dao, when Adjei left, the position of Director General became vacant.  Sidikie Dao, who was seen as the heir apparent died even before the position was advertised.

Edmund Koroma became the first Sierra Leonean Director General of NASSIT.  His candidature was endorsed by the late president Ahmed Tejan Kabbah who wanted a steady hand to manage the trust.  When Edmund Koroma left, a young and inexperienced Sierra Leonean, Sam Bangura (Jnr) was immature and lacked sound judgement. His lack of self confidence also affected his managerial decisions at NASSIT.  Very recently, President Ernest Bai Koroma sacked three of the top managers of the trust, including the director general, one of his deputies, and the head of investment.  Many people had thought that with the sacking of the DG and one of the deputy director generals, the third in command should have been automaticity never came to pass. Nobody knows why, president Koroma decided to advertise the vacant position of Director General at NASSIT.

This idea of appointing people just because they attended iconic universities like Cambridge or Oxford, to manage important institutions in Africa is slowly becoming a damp squib.  We have seen how some of these so-called educated people have messed up institutions that were meant to contribute to the development of the continent.

Sierra Express Media is not a fan of the acting Director General of NASSIT, Joseph Sedu Mans (Jnr) but truth be told the man was treated unfairly. He is one of the first staff members recruited by the Trust, when it was set up in 2001.  For the past thirteen years, he has given his best to the institution.  He has what is now called in corporate lingua franca as “institutional memory”. Why do you have to leave such a man out and bring an inexperienced Harvard graduate, all the way from San Jose, California in the United States of America to come and head an institution as big as NASSIT?

When Allieu Sesay was sacked at National Revenue Authority (NRA ) as Commissioner General, the vacant position was never advertised.  Haja Kallah Kamara was elevated to the post without going through any form of interview, so why NASSIT?

By advertising the post of Director General at NASSIT, the president has put himself under unnecessary political pressure.  It would have been a sensible decision if he had just elevated Joseph Sedu Mans to the position of Director General and filled the vacant positions by executive authority.

Some board of Trustees members have exhausted their tenure and are waiting to either be reappointed or relieved of their duties altogether.  The president should pay special attention to this area of vacancies existing on several boards.  We hope that, the interview for the position of Director General at NASSIT will be conducted in a fair and transparent manner and the interest of the Trust is placed above all personal considerations.

We return to the question: why do you have to advertise the position of Director General at NASSIT?

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