The payments to one time Lebanese businessman in Sierra Leone Mohamed Wanza who was contracted by the then NPRC regime to provide a ‘gun boat’ to surveillance our territorial waters had adequately been defended by the Minister of Information and Communication I B Kargbo.
Digressing on the issue I B Kargbo pointed out that the current APC government never awarded any contract to Wanza but they only inherited the debt from the previous SLPP government who was said to have inherited it from the NPRC junta government, for fear of sanction by the international community.
He said the NPRC government started paying for the boat and continued under the SLPP government but along the line they stopped it and 4 to 5 months to the presidential and parliamentary elections and before APC took over power, Wanza had already taken Sierra Leone and former President Kabbah to ECOWAS court to which Sierra Leone is a signatory.
He added that Fred Carew the then Attorney General and Minister of Justice never made a representation on behalf of the state in the ECOWAS court and the court had proceeded with the matter at the time the current AG and Minister of Justice went to the ECOWAS court to represent Sierra Leone and Wanza was demanding billions of US Dollars.
He also confirmed that, they had no option but to negotiate with Wanza to see how best he could cut down on the money, because if they had allowed the verdict to go on the international community would have sanctioned Sierra Leone.
“We are not a primitive or backward government because Sierra Leone is a signatory to the ECOWAS convention and other international treaties and conventions (we) should therefore adhere to the rule of law.
In line with government’s open initiative the minister said plans are in the pipeline to incorporate UN radio into the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Service SLBS to make it a big corporation for nationwide coverage.
When the merging would have finalized the corporation would be mandated to layoff the old staff and recruit its own staff afresh on merit. By Solomon Rogers