Members of Parliament from the ruling APC and the opposition SLPP have maintained that, they will continue to support the fight against corruption, especially so with the passing into law the new ACC Act as amended, since it will help minimize corruption.
Hon Augustine Bockarie Torto of constituency 25 in the Kono district and representing the All People’s Congress Party (APC) in Parliament said if the Bill was not passed by the House of Parliament, it would have led to an increase in poverty in the country and also would have led to poor infrastructural development. “Education would be poor, and failure to pass this bill would have led to extreme poverty in the country and people would have reacted against the government of the day” Torto said.
Speaking further, Hon Torto recalled the causes of the civil war some years back, which he said, was a result of corruption and extreme poverty that was in existence then. He however cautioned that, corruption could only be minimized and will never be stopped completely irrespective of the power that is given to the ACC. He referred to some countries where the fight against corruption has been taken seriously and that, he therefore appreciates that a lot of amendments have been made to the ACC Act.
According to Hon Torto, the President, Ernest Bai Koroma has good intentions for the country, especially with regards the fight against corruption.
Also, Hon Edward Soloku of Constituency 84 in the Moyamba district and of the opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party said, the country has been receiving development assistance from the developed world but such help have been going down the drain due to improper checking systems in the country. He therefore stated that, the new ACC bill must be supported.
Similar views were also shared by Hon Eric Jumu of Constituency 74 in the Bo district, who said, the idea of fighting corruption was a key priority for the SLPP and that he was happy that some weaknesses were detected in the ACC Act of 2002, and this, he said, has led to the amendments of the Act.
The decision to strengthen the ACC, Hon Jumu said, should not be seen as an APC initiative but one that has the support of all parties in parliament.
Meanwhile, the public has generally welcomed the amendments made to the ACC bill as it is believed to help fight against corruption.