The Deputy Regional Commander of Freetown East, Sierra Leone Police (SLP), Chief Superintendent (CSP) Bakarr Mansaray has on Thursday 15th July 2014 entreated his colleague police officers to live within their earnings. He made this revelation in a meeting organised by the Anti-Corruption Commission for police officers; which was meant to educate them on the new National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) 2014 2018; the role of the SLP in the fight against graft and the corrupt offences as enshrined in the 2008 Anti-Corruption Act.
In his exact words, CSP Mansaray said police officers should practice “to cut their coats according to their sizes”. This he further explained by saying that police officers should always live within their legitimate pecuniary resources and stay out of mischief; which has the tendency of landing them into trouble with the ACC. CSP Mansaray further remarked that meeting with the ACC is very relevant, as it will help police officers maintain integrity, in the execution of their functions.
Earlier, the Local Unit Commander (LUC) Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Samuel Sanie Sesay welcomed the ACC team to Harbour Division. He quickly stated that the Harbour Division consists of two police stations and five police posts; adding that police officers of the division cannot boast of perfection, but authorities have put many measures in place to mitigate corruption within the division’s operational area.
Public Education Officer of the ACC, David Kanekey Conteh established the rationale for the meeting, as he considers the SLP as one of the strongest pillars in the fight against corruption. Mr. Conteh stated that the fight against corruption is equally important to the fight against Ebola. He said so because, Ebola is claiming many lives and corruption is doing like wise. Drawing inferences from the ten years civil unrest in Sierra Leone, Mr. Conteh highlighted corruption as one of the key reasons for the war; which claimed many lives, than even what Ebola has done so far. He therefore encouraged Sierra Leoneans to take the fight against corruption as a very serious matter and consciously give their best to winning the fight.
Speaking on the new National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS), Head of Outreach Unit Glennis Frazer expressed dissatisfaction over the flurry of corruption in every sector of society, such as the schools, hospitals and in road construction, hence the need for a strategy to curb this societal threat. Ms. Frazer reminded participants that schools are now distributing annual report cards, and therefore called upon the SLP to partner with the ACC to ensure that teachers do not extort money from unsuspecting parents who go to collect their children’s report cards.
Ms Frazer went on to say that the new NACS has several thematic areas, but the focus for MDAs is mainstreaming anti-corruption perspectives into their operations. Unlike the previous NACS, the current NACS encourages MDAs to play active roles in the fight against corruption, by creating internal structures for the suppression of corruption. She ended up by encouraging the SLP to establish an institutional framework to minimise corruption.
The presentation on corruption offences by the Acting Deputy Director of Public Education and Outreach Department of the ACC, Patrick Sandi formed the high point of the meeting. Mr. Sandi said, apart from the twenty seven offences in part four of the 2008 AC Act, there are offences such as Failure to Declare Assets and Liabilities and Conspiracy to Commit a Corruption Offence, that constitute corruption. Mr. Sandi said whenever a public officer is offered money or anything of monetary value, as an inducement to expedite, abstain or delay in doing a job, that person commits an offence.
The meeting ended with the presentation of Information, Education and Communications materials to the Deputy Regional Commander CSP Mansaray, by ACC Communications Officer Margaret Jones.
Wednesday July 23, 2014