January 17, 2019
By Regina Pratt
Hon. Justice Miatta Samba, presiding at the High Court of Justice, has granted a L500 million bail and one surety each to erstwhile Director General of the National Social Security and Insurance Trust (NASSIT), Joseph Sedu Mans and Madam Yeabu M.D. Kamara, chairperson Board of Trustees of the same institution.
The judge also ordered that none of the accused persons should leave the country without the prior knowledge of the court.
The duo are before the High Court on six counts of corruption-related offences amounting to Le6.5bn.
But both accused persons have pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The bail consideration came after counsels for 1st accused, L. Taylor, applied for it, citing Section 79 of the Criminal Procedure Act No. 32 of 1965.
He told the Bench that his client’s appearance will not pose any difficulty to the court and guranteed that he will not interfere with the prosecution witnesses.
Similar application was also made by Lawyer Y. A. Yilla, who represented the second accused.
Yilla added that the accused has already been admitted to bail by the ACC, and appealed that the Judge adopt the terms and conditions of the bail condition given by the Commision.
On his part,ACC prosecutor, Calvin T. Mantsebo, argued that the state does not adopt the position of the defence, as bail was entirely the discretion of the Judge.
Lawyer Mantsebo,however, told the Bench that the bail condition set by the ACC were not flouted by the accused persons.
He disclosed that the prosecution would lead sixteen witnesses to prove their case against the accused persons.
According to the particulars of offence, the accused persons being the Director General and the chairperson, Board of Trustees of NASSIT and whose functions concerned the administration, management and use of public funds, on dates unknown between 1st August, 2017, and 31st December, 2017, engaged in a project without prior planning to wit engaged in a project with SISIMI Medical Foundation Inc., for the development, construction and delivery of an urgent care delivery service system for the provision of quality medical services in Sierra Leone without prior planning.
The matter was adjourned to Wednesday, January 30, 2019, for the prosecution to lead their first witness.