In its desire to spread anti-corruption messages to different parts of society in the South, the Southern Region Office of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in an outreach meeting on Friday 21st October 2022 sensitized residents and chiefdom functionaries in Mandu community and its environs, and called on them to expose the corrupt.
Addressing Residents and chiefdom functionaries at the Native Court Barray, Mandu Town, Valunia Chiefdom, ACC’s Regional Manager, South, Momodu Sittar commended the people for their large turnout to the meeting amidst their busy schedule. Manager Sittar asserted that Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies were established to meet the needs of Sierra Leoneans and not to serve as extortion points. He said that due to continuous engagements with public sector institutions, system review recommendations meant to improve on the social services they deliver are now being implemented. Mr. Sittar further stated that such interventions seem to have reduced the spate of corruption in those offices though there is still room for improvement. He disagreed with perpetrators of this heinous act whose aim is to satisfy their selfish desires. Mr. Sittar called on residents and stakeholders to embrace the fight against corruption because it is to save the soul of the nation. ACC boss in the South urged the people of Mandu to be more vigilant, adding that to remain silent is a sign of weakness and unpatriotism. He admonished them that the Anti-Corruption Act 2008 as amended in 2019 covers not only Government officials but any person that contravenes provisions in the Act.
Speaking at the meeting, ACC’s Senior Public Education Officer, Abdulai Saccoh, said that corruption is one of the fundamental factors responsible for the deplorable state of a number of rural communities. Saccoh admonished the participants not give or agree to offer anything of monetary value to a government worker for lawful services they suppose to deliver. He dilated on the adverse consequences of corruption on the provision of social services to rural communities, and therefore implored the people to support the fight against corruption in order to benefit from quality healthcare, standard education, accessible and affordable electricity, pure drinking water and fair dispensation of justice. Saccoh implored his audience to play active and positive role in the actualization of the country’s aspiration for a better life for everyone. The Senior Public Education Officer guaranteed the people that reports made through ACC free phone lines would remain confidential. He urged the people to be vigilant to prevent the misuse of funds or blatant disregard for legislations.
The ACC’s Public Education Officer, Mohamed A. Kabba said, the meeting was intended to motivate them to act and address issues of corruption. Kabba informed his audience that though ACC uses diverse strategies to tackle corruption, its sensitization drive has not only heightened public awareness on corruption issues but has also increased the number of converts. The Public Educator encouraged the people of Mandu to stand against corruption and report their experiences to 077-985-985 or 077-986-986 free on Africell network.
Chiefdom Treasury Clerk of Valunia Chiefdom, Pa Baimba S. Moigbei said, they were pleased to have ACC in their midst, noting that such engagements will go a long way to improve services in schools, health facilities and local courts. Pa Moigbei assured the Commission, on behalf of his people, of their fullest cooperation and support to the fight against corruption.Prior to the community engagement, the ACC Southern Region team educated teachers and pupils of the Government Secondary School, Koyeima on corruption and it adverse consequences on the country’s educational standard. The pupils were admonished to inculcate integrity values and to stay away from academic malpractices because it is an offence and punishable by law. Teachers were appreciated for their contribution to ensuring that the free quality education objectives are attained but advised them to discharge their duties within the framework of the codes of conduct of their profession.