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‘Let come together to defeat corruption’

... ACC Boss

October 16, 2019

By Yusufu S. Bangura

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Director of public education, Patrick Sandi (R), ACC Commissioner Francis Ben Kaifala(M) and Deputy Commissioner Augustine Foday Ngobie(L)

Commissioner of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Francis Ben Kaifala, yesterday called on every Sierra Leonean to come on-board and defeat corruption.

He made the call during their engagement with Civil Society at their Gloucester Street office in Freetown.

“We need collaborative effort from the Civil Society in the fight against corruption. So, let us put our hands together to defeat corruption in our nation,” he called.

The commissioner said the commission was established to investigate instances of alleged corruption and to take such steps as may be necessary for the eradication of corrupt practices.

He said the degree at which corruption has held the country to ransom was probably not known to everyone, as they underestimated it in their daily activities, adding that they would continue to treat it like everyday affair.

He said it was as a result of that reason they setup system to synergize with the civil society so that they can increase the manpower to consciously confront the common enemy-corruption.

He admitted that it is not easy to fight corruption, but with the help of the people they can defeat it.

He expressed gratitude for the support they were getting from civil society.

 “We are ready to confront this corruption, and we are not ready to retreat as there would be no retreat or surrender. But the only way we can succeed when fighting is that we look over our shoulders,” he said.

He called on the civil society to continue giving their support to the commission, adding that information shearing is very vital.

 He said after the Cotton Tree parade of alleged corrupt teachers, they had so many meetings with lawyers, civil society, investigators and public sector departments to see if the public agreed with what they did, but that in many occasions the act was condemned, which points to the fact that information shearing is important.

National Coordinator for Network Movement for Democracy and Human Rights, Abdul Karim Habib, said there was no way they could succeed in moving forward the country without the involvement of every citizen.

He called on the commission to work with civil society in the fight against corruption, stating that the commission alone cannot do it all.

While giving the role of partners in the fight against corruption, Director of Public Education for ACC, Patrick Sandi, said the objective of partnering with the civil society is to promote cooperation and collaboration between the commission and partners in enhancing transparency and accountability in the governance system.

He said people are required to share corrupt related information to the commission at all time, as it is reinforced in Section 77 of the ACC Act of 2008.

He added that people must however note the confidentiality aspect of certain information they shared.

He said for capacity building, they needed the civil society to support them especially in the areas of strengthening the effective operations of the ACC and the partnering institutions.