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 27th June 2016                                                                                                   



Public engagement is one of the leading strategies employed by the Ant-Corruption Commission (ACC) in tackling corruption in Sierra Leone. As such, the ACC Northern Regional Office held outreach meeting with the people of Yoni Bana, at the Court Barray, Yoni Chiefdom, Tonkolili District.


Dilating on the rationale of the meeting, ACC's Senior Public Education Officer Al-Hassan Sesay referred to the engagement as a deliberate step by the Commission to take anti-corruption fight to rural communities. He added that the meeting was to educate them on some of the adverse effects of corruption; inform them of their roles in the post Ebola recovery programmes and solicit their support to the fight. The Senior Public Education Officer stated that the war against corruption would only be won if Sierra Leoneans demonstrated sincerity to stand against the evil act.


Updating his audience on ACC activities, Sesay disclosed that there are plans to launch the Pay No Bribe (PNB) campaign which will be piloted in five MDAs; SLP, EDSA, GUMA/SALWACO, Ministries of Education and Health and in four pilot districts-Bombali, Bo, Kenema and Western Area.  He informed them of the presence of Citizens Service Delivery Charters in institutions notably; the Makeni Regional Hospital, Immigration Department, Road Safety Authority and National Registration Secretariat to eliminate the opportunities of corruption.


Speaking on key corruption issues affecting the community, ACC's Public Education Officer Abdulai Saccoh emphasized that the public must take ownership of the fight to prevent the corrupt minority from pilfering State resources that should be enjoyed by all. ''The Commission cares about the welfare of Sierra Leoneans and would stop at nothing to ensure that public funds/property get to the targeted beneficiaries'' he noted. He urged his audience to desist from glorifying the corrupt as their actions have reinforced poverty and wrecked the growth of their communities.


He entreated his audience to resist, reject and report any incidence of corruption to the ACC. The Public Education Officer guaranteed the people of informant protection as the Commission’s work hinges on confidentiality.


Earlier, the Chiefdom Speaker, Pa Alhaji Hassan Kamara commended ACC for taking the fight against corruption to their door steps.  Pa Kamara noted that such engagement would go a long way to restore transparency and accountability in their community. He assured the Commission of his community's commitment to the fight through the effective monitoring of government programmes and projects as well as NGOs.

In another engagement, the Commission visited Yoni Bana and Ansarul Islamic Secondary Schools in Yoni in a ''Meet the school campaign'' to sensitize the pupils and teachers on corrupt practices prevalent in schools and how they could imbibe the virtues of integrity, probity and transparency.