Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Mohamed D Koroma Wednesday intimated this press that, Sierra Leone is not under a military junta regime where people are just randomly chased and arrested because they are being investigated for their Past.
Speaking at his Youyi building office on why the findings of the Transitional Report are yet to be looked into by the relevant authorities, the Deputy Minister said, the report was handed over to the President by the committee that was set up to do a stock taking exercise and that, when he received the report, the President then called in the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) to act on the report, since they have the legal mind to know what constitutes an act of criminality or what not.
He stated that, the report is a bulky document and that, “when chasing you have to ensure you are fully prepared and this is not a military regime where we should just arrest people because they are likely to be investigated”, the Deputy Minister said.
He said they are, as a government aware that people wanted to know what was going to be the outcome of the report, “especially as there are concerns that, our national resources were destroyed by the former government, but when authenticating that aspect we must allow the legal minds to operate”, Koroma said and that they are as a government going to ensure that the ACC operates without any interference from government.
The commission, Koroma went on, was not properly constituted as it had some problems with staff but this, he said had been handled.
Asked to comment on the government’s policy towards press freedom, Koroma said, he and other people entered into government to ensure there was press freedom in the country and that the President, Dr Ernest Koroma was a lover of press freedom but cautioned that, press freedom must be exercised with responsibility on the part of Media practioners.
On the recent issue that relates to the SLPP radio, Koroma said, the party failed to go by the dictates of the law as they had asked for permission from the Independent Media Commission for them to change a number of their equipment, but they went ahead and installed their equipment without the approval of the commission. “Radio Unity illegally connected their antenna and as such it was a crime”, he claimed. The Deputy Minister said there was no reason reaching the IMC for an official complaint since the matter had nothing to do with libel or that of banning the station. “We could have reported to the IMC if it was a case of defamation, but this has to do with trespass”, Koroma maintained.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Minister has confirmed that, “the generator that is serving the SLBS antenna at Leicester Peak was at the same time serving other stations including that of the APC. SLBS charge all of these stations thus enabling them to make money as well”, Koroma revealed.
Asked to comment on the, performance of the government, he said in less than a year, at least every household in the capital can now boast of electricity but however accepted that, there are areas they need to improve upon if only they are to succeed as a government.