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We Await the Last Commissions of Inquiry

We Await the Last Commissions of Inquiry

Here is a brief message for you the party loyalists who support anything and everything that your party leaders say and do. When they tell you that their just concluded Commissions of Inquiry are going to be the last in Sierra Leone, you should know they are trying to dupe you with false impressions of hope.

These can’t be the last Commissions of Inquiry because corrupt and unchecked use of public finances by your current party leaders shows no difference from the corruption of those they claim to fight against.

What facts you all need to know are these: frivolous and unchecked public spending –  and I am referring to off-budgetary expenditure for that matter – has increased and worsened in Sierra Leone in the less than three years that your so-called anti-corruption crusaders have been in power.

I am publishing an example here with this message — and there are many of these examples — that show, for instance, how your SLPP party officials in Bo received Le347, 850,000 (three hundred and forty-seven million, eight hundred and fifty Leones) from the Finance Ministry to fund preparations for a three-day “thank you” visit of your party leader, Julius Maada Bio in early October 2018.

This was within the first six months of the party’s arrival in power.

Now, take note that this so-called “special imprest” was not inclusive of the supposed “regular imprest” used by the president and his entourage during their domestic travels as per diem and other incidental expenses.

This money in question was a special request placed by the party’s officials in Bo and was collected by the very party officials to supposedly organize the “thank you” event in Bo. This kind of expenditure is one that is outside budgetary approval; it represents the kinds of frivolous spending that has been ongoing in the country since your party leaders assumed office.

You should be asking yourself how much public money has been wasted in both domestic and international travels by your party leaders since they came to power in 2018. How have they used domestic and international travels as ways to divert public resources into their own benefit in form of per diems and related costs?

The point is simple: your party leaders are doing exactly the same or worse than what they claim to be fighting against. And the danger in all this is that the few who are doing this are misleading you to believe that their public performance is a genuine commitment to ending graft and the usual theft of public resources.

So how can they tell you there will be no more inquiries into corruption and graft in Sierra Leone when they have not even addressed their own present corrupt ways of spending public money? The real inquiries into national graft and public theft — that is the real Commissions of Inquiry — are yet to come.

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah

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