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After embezzling Ebola Funds resigned Tourism Minister begs for mercy

After embezzling Ebola Funds resigned Tourism Minister begs for mercy

Peter Bayuku Conteh (in photo) is Sierra Leone’s former Minister of Tourism and Culture who resigned following reports that he embezzled Italian-donated funds amounting to over Le100 million meant for quarantined homes.

His passport was consequently impounded and he is now pleading with the Islamic religious community to help him get it back and relevant documentation, though he failed to confess his sins to the congregation at the Kabala praying field where he went for prayers on the Ramadan festive day on the 17th July, 2015.

While addressing the congregation at the Kabala praying field, the former Tourism Minister lamented that the seizure of his passport has put him in a situation akin to open detention as he cannot travel out of the country.

On bended knees, the erstwhile Tourism Minister pleaded with the Muslim religious leaders and the entire congregation to intervene in the matter and ensure that he gets back his passport. He, however, never told the congregation why his passport was confiscated.

The behaviour of Bayuku did not go down well with many religious elders and other stakeholders who condemned him categorically saying that was not the right forum to raise such an issue and the strictly warned the Imam never to allow anyone to distract the congregation with personal or political talks.

The story was that while he was serving as Minister of Tourism and Culture, Peter Bayuku Conteh wrote a very sorrowful letter to the Italian donors claiming that many quarantined homes in the north of the country were starving and needed urgent support.

The Italian donors reportedly responded by sending over €20,000 which Bayuku Conteh pocketed.

In the midst of the scandal, he resigned on the pretext of poor health!

By Mohamed Bah-Kabala

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  • In Europe now, visas are being refused to anyone with a criminal record or pending charges. The best advice would be to hold fire with receiving his passport as he may not be going anywhere soon. Seeing he was Tourism minister he could have made the country sites more attractive so he can now ruminate amongst the trees and flowers. Knowing that he did sweet FA at improving anything let him stay and enjoy the scenery he created as his legacy. You will all live to regret what you have chosen to do whilst in office

    21st July 2015

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