January 20, 2015 By Ibrahim Tarawallie
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has urged all national and international non-governmental organizations to publish monies and pledges received for and on behalf of Sierra Leoneans in respect of the fight against the deadly Ebola virus disease in the country.
According to a release signed by ACC Commissioner, Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara, NGOs were urged to also publish aid that is given to the government as well as expenditure in relation to the Ebola outbreak in the country.
“All manner of persons who solicit, receive or disburse Ebola funds for and on behalf of the people of Sierra Leone are urged to seek the approval of the Accountant-General in the opening or setting up of bank accounts in respect of such funds, consistent with Section 129(1) of the Financial Management Regulation of 2007,” the ACC release stated.
The release added that a task-force has been set up to directly monitor the management of Ebola funds nationwide, and that they would ensure accountability and transparency in the management of such funds provided by government, NGOs and development partners.
The release further stated that complaints on assistance not reaching the desired beneficiaries or money being siphoned by certain individuals will be investigated as a matter of priority under the ACC Act of 2008, and that assets and bank accounts of persons found guilty of misappropriation or mismanagement of Ebola funds will be pursued, seized and forfeited to the state, in compliance with the relevant laws.
“Public officials convicted for acts of dishonesty and fraud in relation to the management of Ebola funds will not only be dismissed but shall be recommended not to hold any other public office for life. A new hotline (161 Airtel toll free) is now being operated to receive all corruption complaints exclusively related to the management of Ebola funds,” the release concluded.