$950,000 unaccounted for @ Youth Ministry


March 12, 2019

By Dusuba Koroma

The former Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Youth Affairs, Adikali Samura, has testified in Commission room (1) that he has no knowledge about $950,000 that was paid to West Stars General Supplies for the purchase of farm equipment for the Youth in Farm Project.

Samura in his testimony, asserted that during his tenure at the ministry in May 2014 to December 2017, he did serve as the Permanent Secretary and Vault Controller supposedly, and that he was very much aware about the project that was initiated by the then Minister of Youth Affairs, Alimamy A. Kamara in 2013.

Since the projects were initiated by the minister, Samura stated that, when it comes to signing of documents and processing of papers, “it passed through me and later the minister approves.”

When he was asked as to who supervises the whole project, the witness stated that the minister was the sole supervisor of all the five project, adding that there was a procurement unit comprising the procurement officer, the chairman of the committee, project managers, professional head and the accountant of the ministry.

The lead State Counsel, however, produced a letter dated 9th November 2017, requesting for payment of $950,000 for the procurement of farm equipment for the said project.

The witness recognised the signature on the letter, but later stated that the contract and amount being paid for was strange to him, as he had no knowledge about it.

The defense Counsel, Lawyer Macauley representing the person of interest, Alimany Kamara, in his cross-examination, asked the witness what he signed for in the letter dated 9th November 2017 as he has already claimed the signature to his in his testimony.

 “I cannot tell exactly tell what was it about but I firmly believe that it was detached from somewhere and then attached to this letter,” he stated, adding that he was skeptical about the content of the letter and the amount stated.

The witness was also cross-examined by Lawyer Salieu M.Tarawally, who represented West Stars General Supplies.