Over Fraud and Misuse of Donor Funds Welt Hunger Hilfe Indicted
In days old, alchemists claimed they could mix simple compounds to make pure gold. Today in Sierra Leone, under the noses of our people, a new alchemist breed has emerged. They are called international NGOs. And for long, under the watch of our Government, and frequently in collaboration with them, these modern alchemists bearing labels we know well, WHH, Oxfam, Save the Children, Care, Concern, Soros Foundation, Coopi, IPA, etc, literally sit on a gold mine.
That gold mine is the donor and private money – millions of dollars, Euros, Yen and Pounds of it, annually given for the people of Sierra Leone but used by the NGOs who channel it into their interpretation of how our development should be crafted. Unfortunately, this means that the money is controlled by the NGOs and how they spend it is really and truly out of the grasp of the intended beneficiaries-citizens. But more importantly, these modern day alchemist NGOs send the clear, vulgar and indeed neo-colonialist message to Sierra Leone, that we are not competent to bid on equal footing with these international NGOs and if that hurdle is accomplished, which I alert you, is impossible procedurally, to then do the development work ourselves. In their thinking, we cannot build our nation! There are two reasons for their racist viewpoints : the donors need to control the money in their own grouping of NGO cohorts, and second the perpetuation of an elite Aid grouping of alchemist NGOs fuels the industry that is supposedly Aid for our development.
The relationship is so cosy that frequently it is criminal, in its lobbying for donor funds by the alchemist NGOs, preparation of proposals by these NGOs on ready-made tick-the-boxes templates, the donors-with- alchemist NGO lunches, dinners and beach-side alcoholic ensembles towards conspiracies to defraud the people of Sierra Leone, by rolling out new programmes, projects and more importantly take funds for our people straight to their alchemist NGO bank accounts.
Okay, some examples of conspiracy to defraud and related theft uncovered during my long investigation into alchemist NGOs in our country: Alchemist – NGO #1: WHH – during procedurally unacceptable processes, under a Call for Proposals at the European Commission, in Sierra Leone, under European Commission Financing Agreement 21456, the alchemist NGO, German Welt Hunger Hilfe (WHH), through international staff, obtained fraudulently, a 6,500,000 Euros cash pile earmarked for Sierra Leone farmers and sped off in their Prados to perform on our farmers behalf, a project that not a single person can really say ever did anything for our agricultural sector. My investigation revealed that the alchemist NGO WHH then engaged in at least a second conspiracy to obtain money by deception by obtaining a European Commission, European External Action grant 340-491 in the amount Euros 5,250,000. Now this was supposed to be to help Sierra Leoneans get solar lights to their rural locations, help our children read their books at night, but in fact was the alchemist NGO’s self-enrichment process that saw co-opted managers in the conspiracy to defraud European taxpayer’s donations and the Government and people of Sierra Leone.
My investigations through numerous witnesses, including technicians, revealed that hundreds of our citizens were cheated out of these EC lights and panels and thousands nearly electrocuted as the project had no insurance and even licences and incompetent electricians and technicians fielded high voltage directly to hospital patients in two Missionary hospitals and their surrounding communities.
What needs to be done by the new Government is evaluate all these international NGOs. Do we really need them? What have they actually done with our money? Why does our NGO registration process allow these alchemist NGOs to come in and defraud Sierra Leone?
But of utmost importance, to have an immediate, robust, water tight structure that sees all donor money from whatever source, EC, DfiD, German Cooperation, JICA, USAID, etc., poured into NGOs, is monitored forensically by the Government of Sierra Leone.
And the donors? Well their conduct is equally deplorable and complicit with the alchemist NGO communities. It is a conspiracy to defraud – and they know it.
I predict the cooperation paradigm that saw the donor – alchemist NGOs relationship prosper for a decade with our citizens money, will come to an end very soon.
Contacting Welt Hunger Hilfe in relation to the above allegations, the Program Officer for the organization, Emurana K. Sowa denied any wrong doing by them but however asked this writer to revisit the office for a proper response to the allegations above as the Country Director, who is best placed in matters like this, is out of the country.
By Ibrahim Alusine Kamara
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