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ACC enlists support from heads of schools in Lunsar

August 5, 2020

ACC North-Western Manager, Al-Hassan Sesay, addressing heads of schools

As a way of preventing incidences of corruption in the conduct of public examinations, the Public Education and Outreach Unit of the Anti-Corruption North-West Regional Office on Tuesday 28th July, 2020, held a sensitization meeting with heads of Primary and Secondary Schools in Lunsar Town.

The customised meeting was to popularise the task force on combatting examinations malpractice and to apprise school administrators on their roles to ensuring transparency and best practice in public examinations.

Addressing school administrators at the A.D Wurie Secondary School, the regional Manager Al-Hassan Sesay said to address the mammoth issues in the education sector the ACC requires the support and collaboration of all stakeholders.

He pointed out that in achieving a corrupt free system, school authorities are expected to harness the needed efforts to putting together the internal control mechanism and structures that will mitigate incidences of corruption in schools. The Regional Manager recounted several interventions made by the ACC in addressing issues of illegal charges and other corrupt practices across various schools in the country and called on them to embrace the fight against corruption.

Manager Sesay explained key highlights of the 2019 corruption perception survey report wherein public schools were placed as the third most corrupt sector.

As a prevention mechanism, Sesay noted that sustained public education by the Commission is a demonstration of commitment to fighting corruption in the sector and to taking the necessary action for the betterment of the country.

He said exams malpractice and the use of school fees subsidies are issues of great concern to the ACC and explained that the former is now a punishable offence in the 2019 amendment Act of the ACC to a fine of fifty million Leones or five years jail term.

Manager Sesay also brought to their notice guidelines and penalties put together by the Ministry of Basic and Senior School Education (MBSSE) for anyone who involves in exams malpractice.

 “In an event there are any issues of the sort, you will be held responsible,” he emphasised.

He underscored the importance of the proper use of school funds, accounting for them and ensuring that access, quality and equity are evident in the process. He also pinpointed that decisions taken at CTA meetings must have the expressed approval from MBSSE and issued a stern warning to anyone manipulating the outcome of such meetings.

Welcoming the ACC team,  the Zonal Supervisor of Schools Patrick M. Kamara expressed delight to receive the team in his area of supervision and described the meeting as timely and appropriate in guiding the activities of school administrators and to further strengthen the collaboration between the MBSSE and the ACC. Augustine A. Sesay and Hassan Conteh, Chairman Conference of Principal and Head of Head Teacher’s Council respectively expressed similar sentiments of appreciation to the ACC team to sensitize them on various corruption matters and called for continued public education engagements.

They expressed conviction that the anti-corruption messages received will be of immense help to them in the daily administration of their various schools.

The sensitization meeting according to the Senior Public Education Officer Sahid Mohamed Kamara was to educate and engage school heads on the task force to combat exams malpractices, the use of fees subsidies and other corruption issues. Public Education Officer Mohamed Thullah explained the reporting mechanisms and encouraged the heads of schools to take the needed step in resisting, rejecting and reporting corruption at all times. He encouraged school authorities to put in place internal supervisory mechanisms and to also demonstrate leadership by example with keen interest in upholding ethical standards and professionalism.

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