US AMBASSADOR IMPRESSED WITH ACC WORK
By Abubakarr Turay (ABT)
The US Ambassador to Sierra Leone has spoken of his admiration for the Anti-Corruption Commission for the effort and strides made in the fight against corruption in Sierra Leone.
Speaking at his farewell engagement with journalists at the US Embassy in Freetown, Ambassador Michael Owen said the Sierra Leone has made serious gains in the fight against corruption especially in the past four years.
The Ambassador’s admiration of the ACC may not be unconnected to the fact that the Commission has been able to secure many convictions of individuals charged with corruption offences at an unprecedented rate in the past few years. This follows the recovery of billions of leones of stolen money, especially the 39 billion leones recovered in 2012. Quite recently, the intervention of the ACC to probe and prosecute officials of the Ministry of Health accused of misappropriating GAVI funds led to the resumption of GAVI support to the country.
Ambassador Owen said one good thing about the country’s efforts in the fight against graft is the fact that it has been intensifying its efforts and at the same time improving on the gains that are being achieved.
Sierra Leone recently also qualified for the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) funding. One of the eligibility criteria for developing countries to benefit from this US funding is a country’s efforts to combat corruption, one of the indicators Sierra Leone was able to pass to gain qualification.
Ambassador Owen said his admiration of the work of the ACC is something he would take with him to the American people.
The US Embassy has been providing technical supports to the ACC.
Ambassador Owen was sworn in as the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Sierra Leone on August 16, 2010.Start writing here...