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At COI: Five fugitive Youth Ministry officials subpoenaed

April 4, 2019

By Regina Pratt

Justice Biobele Georgewill of Commission of Inquiry 64 has ordered that five officials of the Ministry of Youth Affairs, who have been declared as persons of interest and are currently nowhere to be found, should be subpoenaed with their names and pictures published in newspapers.

Justice Georgewill made the order after the current Permanent Secretary of the Ministry told the Commission that the five persons of interest, who were supposed to appear before the inquiry, have long abandoned their offices after the 2018 elections.

He ordered that all effort should be applied for them to appear on Monday, April 8, to testify before the commission about activities undertaken by them from 2015 to 2018.

“If they refuse to appear before the commission, the relevant authorities will cause their arrest and bring them before the commission. They are persons of interest to assist the commission with relevant information,” he reiterated.

Led in evidence by state counsel, Ladipo Robin-Mason, Commission Witness 21, Andrew Lawrence Sorie, who is the current Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, testified that he started working in the ministry on 6th December, 2018 and that he doesn’t know the whereabouts of those persons of interest.

He said Reverend Ibrahim Koroma, who was the Project Coordinator for Youth in Drainage ceased working at the ministry from April, 2018,while  Umunatu Turay, who was the Finance and Administrative Officer did same.

For the Project Director, Youth Village, Dr. Serry Idriss Koroma, he told the commission that the latter had reached retirement age and that his contract was not renewed, adding that before his appointment he was staying  in Australia and that he might have returned back.

“Massaio Mansaray who was the Finance and Administrative Officer for the Youth Village resigned her post in August 2018.Also,Project Manager, Youth in Fisheries, Mohamed Kamara, abandoned his office and has since not returned the vehicle assigned tom him,” he testified.

Meanwhile, Lawyer Mason told the commission that they have endeavoured to reach out to them but to no avail, insinuating that most of them must be out of the jurisdiction.