By Aminata Phidelia Allie
Spokesman of the Anti Corruption Commission, Shollay Davies has told Politico that 29 people indicted by the commission will be arraigned before a Freetown High Court on Monday, 18 March.
They were charged on Thursday 7 March on charges bordering on corruption to the tune of over le 11 Billion.
The indictments were in connection with alleged misappropriation of funds under the National Health Sector Support Project in the Ministry of Health and Sanitation and others from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, the National Revenue Authority and the mining sector.
The indictments came weeks after some of the officials were unexpectedly suspended from duty by the President for alleged misappropriation of the GAVI Alliance donor support for immunization in the country.
Addressing the media, the ACC Commissioner, Joseph Kamara promised the commission’s “unrelenting effort” in the fight against corruption and assured that it was just the beginning of “a very long process”.
The 29 indictees automatically stand suspended from duty and they include the top bras of the health ministry among them the Chief Medical Officer, his deputy, the director of hospital and laboratory services, and the director of planning and policy.
GAVI Alliance froze $6 million of funds from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which had been earmarked to vaccinate Sierra Leone’s children, after their own audit showed that over $1 million of their money to the country had gone missing. The irregularities, according to GAVI Alliance, included undocumented expenses, cash disbursements with no documentation and deliberately inflated procurement costs.