Madam Sao Kpato Hannah Max KyneCommissioner of the National Commission For Social Action(NaCSA) has testified against Musa Kargbo and security agent deployed at her resident and 3 others for allegedly stealing millions of Leones from her house.
The accused persons Musa Kargbo, Daniel Sesay, FodaySesay and Bell Dabohmade their second appearance before Magistrate SahrKekura of the Pademba road court No 1 and were arraigned in four counts charges ranging from conspiracy, House breaking, Larceny and malicious damage all contrary to the laws of Sierra Leone.
According to the indictmennts on count one, the police alleged that all the accused person on 10 February 2021 at No 104 Regent Road Hill Station Freetown conspired together with other persons unknown to commit a felony to wit House breaking and larceny.
The police further alleged that the first accused Musa Kargbo on the same date in Freetown with intent to steal, break and enter into the dwelling house of Sao Kpato Hannah Max Kyne and stole therein Le15 million, ($9,800USD) equivalent to 180 million, 3set of gold necklace value le60 million, one pair set gold bracelet valued Le100 million and other properties of the said complainant.
Count three (3) stated that Musa Kargbo maliciously damage and syphoned digital security box(safe) valued le500 million.
Whiles Counts four added that the accused persons Daniel SesayFodaySesay and Bell Daboh well knowing that Musa Kargbo enter into steal Sao Kpato Hannah Max Kyne and stole physical cash and property received and maintained the said properties of the complainant.
Madam Commisisonner in further testimony recognized first accused Person Musa Kargbo and recalled 10 February 2021, adding that on that day she was to travel to the provinces for three days but said Whiles she was about to go she remember that all her appliances were on and therefore requested first accused to switch them off for her which he did according to her and returned the keys to her.
She said on knowing to her the accused did not lock the doors but came back with the keys pretending that he had lock the doors.
“I drove out of the house and I was out of town about three days on my return I heard people talking about what heard happen and I also received information that first accused had left the compound the same day I travel”, she noted.
According to her, upon receiving that information, she called the first accused but his phone was off, adding that on her arrival she discovered that all the doors were open. “When I discover that all the doors were open including mine, I went straight to my room and check the place where I usually kept my monies and discovered that all the monies I kept worth million of Leones were missing, my safe was wide open so I was shock and started shouting that the first accused had kill me”, she narrates.
She said it was then that the security came to her aid and took her down stairs, according to her 9, 800 dollars including her jewelry and one mobile phone that were inside the safe were all missing
She said she immediately informed the Congo Cross police who came to her house and interview her and later the matter was transfer to CID HQ for further investigation where statement was obtained from her.
commissioners further that few days after the matter was reported to the police, she observed that the tap is not running whiles and that whiles she was trying to check as to what had cause it, she saw the safe under the bed but it was empty and damaged adding that she also informed the police about the damage safe and they later came to the house and took the damage safe to the station.
According to her, sometimes in may she received information from the police that the first accused was arrested through Interpol and was later called to make additional statement to the police at CID HQ which she did.
The accused persons were not represented and therefore they could not cross examination the witness.
Magistrate Kekura refused Bail and remanded the accused persons in prison whiles the matter was adjourned to 31 May 2021 for further hearing.
Finance Ministry Commence Seminar on Debt Management Strategy
The Ministry of Finance in collaboration with partners has on Monday 24th May commenced a two-week (May 24 – June 2) seminar at the New Brookfields Hotel in Freetown on Medium Term Debt Management Strategy with World Bank and International Monetary Fund Virtual Mission.
This occasion would mark the third in the conduct of Medium-Term Debt Strategy (MTDS) in Sierra Leone. The first MTDS ever conducted in Sierra Leone lapsed in 2017, covering the period 2013 to 2017. Following the political transition in April 2018, through the request of the Government the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) coordinated the conduct of the Second MTDS for Sierra Leone.
During the opening session of the seminar, the Deputy Minister of Finance (One) Dr. Patricia Laverley said
as a Ministry, they are pleased to report that the Government of Sierra Leone has successfully developed and published a domestic arrears strategy following the verification of the stock of arrears by the Audit Service Sierra Leone.
“The strategy is under implementation and is expected to feature in the MTDS that is about to be conducted for Sierra Leone for the third time,” she said.
She said through a request by the Government of Sierra Leone, the World Bank has again consented to support the Government to revise the existing strategy by including the implications of the domestic arrears strategy whilst also accommodating dynamics in the macroeconomic environment since 2018 MTDS exercise.
According to Dr. Laverley, MTDS exposes the inherent cost and risks characteristics of the existing public debt portfolio and costs and risks implications for various financing options, noting that the MTDS examines the trade-offs between cost and risks on the public debt portfolio and guides Government on a preferred financing path and strategy that are aimed at minimizing the trade-off and cost and risks implications.
“Since the political transition in 2018, Government has implemented several public financial management reforms which are now yielding fruits. Domestic revenue mobilization has increased while Government has sustained fiscal consolidation to improve on the fundamentals of the economy. The exchange rate has remained stable over the last several months while inflation, after a very long time, has entered the single-digit territory. We do hope that this will be sustained as Government continues to support its development agenda while promoting human capital development, which is the fulcrum of the New Direction Manifesto,” she said.
Dr. Laverley also stated that the recent developments in the mining sector are encouraging and the ministry does hope that projections of macroeconomic aggregates would reflect these new realities.
She said despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Sierra Leone has continued to make positive economic strides as highlighted above, noting that the global financial landscape is changing, propelled by the Covid-19 pandemic, which as a Government they should not lose sight off.
“There is every need for us to continue to upscale domestic revenue mobilization and capitalize on innovative financing to implement our National Medium Term Development Plan without posing debt sustainability risks. I do hope the MTDS exercise would consider new innovative financing options to support our development efforts,” she added.
Dr. Laverley said the World Bank is set to work with the national MTDS and DSA team to conduct the 3rd MTDS for Sierra Leone which would reflect the above developments.
She said Government has just concluded a macro-fiscal forecasting workshop whose output is expected to feed into the MDTS exercise.
“I, therefore, look forward to the conclusion of the MTDS workshop and the report which should inform Government financing decisions in the short to medium term,” she concluded.
Senior Debt Specialist at the World Bank Mr. Leandro Secundro during his virtual statement said that the MTDS framework consists of an eight-step methodology, supported by an analytical tool, which enables governments to assess the potential cost and risk trade-offs they may face under different debt management strategies.
“The MTDS is a framework developed by the World Bank and IMF to guide the debt management decisions and operations of government authorities. The MTDS links borrowing with macroeconomic policy; help countries maintain sustainable levels of debt; and facilitates domestic debt market development,” he said.
He commends Sierra Leone for continual compliance with MTDS and calls for a fruitful seminar.
According to the Director of Public Debt Management Division Mr. Mathew Sandy, the seminar will run for two weeks and it comprises the Medium Term Debt Management Strategy team, the University of Sierra Leone, and Civil Society Organizations.
“Pres. Bio’s GovtHas no Political Prisoner in S/Leone”
-Office of the Attorney-General
By Joseph S. Margai
The Office of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice (AGMJ) has disclosed that there is no political prisoner in Sierra Leone because President Julius Maada Bio believes in political tolerance and therefore harasses no one as a result of his/her political affiliation.
Speaking exclusively in an interview on Monday, May 17, 2021, in his Lamina Sankoh Street office in Freetown, Solicitor-General in the Office of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mohamed LaminTarawalley, said in the last three years of President Bio’s reign in governance, the wheels of justice had spun freely, and thereby ensuring that there is no political prisoner in any of the Correctional Centres currently.
The Solicitor-General said there had been many successes that AGMJ has recorded under the ‘New Direction’ government that has propelled access to justice to all Sierra Leoneans regardless of their political, social, regional, ethnical and religious affiliations.
Recruitment of 32 State Counsel
President Bio’s vision of providing a platform for everyone to access justice, has led to the recruitment of 32 State Counsel in the country.
“For the very first time in Sierra Leone’s history, President Bio’s government recruited 32 State Counsel in a single recruitment process. This was to ensure that there is uninterrupted access to justice for everyone in Sierra Leone. These State Counsel have now been assigned to the various courts in the country,” the Solicitor-General said.
The deployment of Resident Judges at district level
The ‘New Direction’ government of President Bio has ensured the deployment of Resident Judges at district level in Sierra Leone
“Previously, Judges used to go on circuit in the provinces to attend to matters that were pending in the High Court. The Chief Justice, who heads the Judiciary, which is completely different from the Ministry of Justice, had ensured that judges are now resident in most of the headquarter towns and this move helped in reducing files before the courts,” he said.
He said Resident Judges have now been deployed in Kailahun, Karene, and Moyamba, adding that plans are underway to deploy Resident Judges in Kamakwie, Kambia, and other districts in the country.
The setting of the Alternative Dispute Resolution System
President Bio’s efforts to take justice to the doorsteps of all Sierra Leoneans, irrespective of their terrains, has led to the establishment of an Alternative Dispute Resolution System in the country.
The Solicitor-General said the government of Sierra Leone is in an advanced stage to set up an Alternative Dispute Resolution System which will enable people at the local level to administer justice to their peers.
“They no longer have to come to the Magistrate Courts to access justice. We are aware that in most cases, when people from the villages are committed to the Magistrate Courts or other courts within the justice system, the dress code of some lawyers and the courtrooms will sometimes generate panic among them, and they would subsequently become frightened to express themselves. This government has done its best to avoid such situations by bringing into existence of the Alternative Dispute Resolution System. This system will enable their own people within their villages to administer justice to them,” the Solicitor-General stated.
However, he added, the Alternative Dispute Resolution System has its limitations, noting that there are certain cases that are above their jurisdiction which they will have to take to the main courts.
Setting up of a Model Court for Sexual Offence Cases
The Solicitor-General said President Bio’s government, through the Judiciary, set up a Model Court for all Sexual Penetration cases so as to create a safe environment for our women and girls in the country, noting that the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice has a Counsel attached to the court to expedite trials.
He said the government has already repealed and amended the Sexual Offences Act in order to curb child molesters, adding that State Counsels are now assigned to those cases.
President Bio to remove death penalty
As a man that believes in human rights and the Rule of Law, President Bio’s government is about to remove the death penalty and replace it with life imprisonment.
“President Bio has made public pronouncements of his intention to abolish the death penalty and has taken steps to ensure the laws regarding death penalty are amended,” the Solicitor-General said, adding that President Bio’s predecessors had only placed a moratorium on death penalty but never removed it.
Supervision of the three Commissions of Inquiry (COIs)
The Ministry of Justice successfully supervised the three Commissions of Inquiry (COIs) and all persons of interest (POIs) were given a chance to participate in the process.
After the COIs were concluded and the Judges made their recommendations, which subsequently enabled government to release its White Paper on those recommendations, POIs who were against the recommendations made by those COI Judges, were given the opportunity to appeal.
The Solicitor-General said at the moment, there are 110 appeals lodged at the Court of Appeal, noting that 38 applications have been filed to the High Court for Stay-of-Execution of the findings of those COIs and there are 32 Confiscation Orders.
“In all of these appeal cases, the Office of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice has had no external pressure from anyone to disadvantage any of the appellants,” he noted.
Committee set up to look into CRC’s recommendations
The current government led by President Bio, has set up a Presidential Taskforce, headed by the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Hon. Anthony Brewah, to look at the recommendations made by the Constitutional Review Committee (CRC) and the White Paper that was prepared by the previous government.
“In that White Paper prepared by the previous government, most of the recommendations of the CRC were discarded, and they selectively picked and chose what was of interest to them, thereby disregarding public interest,” he said, and noted that the Taskforce has completed its mandate while awaiting the Attorney-General to the findings to President Bio.
COVID-19 Regulations drafted by the Ministry of Justice
The Solicitor-General said in order to fight against COVID-19, the Ministry of Justice drafted Regulations and successfully implemented them during the pandemic.
Advise MDAs on opinion and concurrence
“In the last three years, our ministry has assisted Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) with technical inputs when entering into contracts with any company that would be paid from the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF). We advised them on procurement issues that had helped the government to save lot of money,” the Solicitor-General said.
AGMJ defended Government of Sierra Leone’s interest in the matter between the government and SL Mining
The Solicitor-General stated that when SL Mining took the government of Sierra Leone to three tribunals abroad, the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice defended government’s interest.
No political interference in the ministry’s operation
“The Ministry of Justice has enjoyed working independently without any external or political pressure to disadvantage anyone that is or has been in court for any criminal offence. President Bio’s government has actually provided a platform for every legal practitioner of this ministry to work without political interference,” the Solicitor-General noted.
PUBLIC REVIEW SPORT
President Bio Unveils Bo Rangers Football Complex
His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio has officially opened the Bo Rangers Football Clubhouse and Secretariat in Bo City, Southern Sierra Leone.
Chairman Board of Directors of the Bo Rangers Football Club, Hon. PC GassimuMallah thanked President Bio for gracing the occasion and for injecting new spirit into Sierra Leone football, noting that many young people, who had taken football as their career, were fully engaged in the country.
He added that spectators and football fans in the country would always remain grateful to President Bio for reviving football.
PC Mallah also thanked the Executive Director of the Club, BabadiKamara, for his disciplined leadership and for transforming the club into an enviable one.
Executive Chairman of Bo Rangers Football Club, BabadiKamara, said he was happy to have superintended the work.
He added that he was also happy that the official opening of the clubhouse facility, the new home of their team, was being commissioned by the first gentleman of the Republic, His Excellency, the President, Dr Julius Maada Bio. He noted that the idea was about “bringing joy to people’s lives, particularly the football family.”
“Today’s event marks an epoch-making day in the history of Bo Rangers Football Club in particular and Sierra Leone football in general. It symbolizes our ambition and vision of football excellence as well as reinforces our executive’s determination to achieve our objectives. Today, we thank Allah for the blessings He has showered on this club and those who’ve served it over the years. We ask for Allah’s blessings on those who will use this facility in the years ahead,” he noted.
The chairman further said that the value of football to the nation could not be over-emphasized, adding that aside from being a major contributor to economic and social livelihoods, it also helped keep young people away from crime and drugs. He also noted that in a bid to complement His Excellency’s flagship programme of human capital development in the non-formal sector, he had personally decided to take up the challenge of empowering young people.
“I inherited a bank account with a cash balance of less than Le. 10 million. Today, I am happy to inform you all that the Club has a cash balance of more than Le.1billion generated, inter alia, from gate proceeds, donations by well-meaning supporters and members of the club, sales of jerseys and support from FIFA/CAF Corona Relief to clubs received through the Sierra Leone Football Association.
We are today the envy of all clubs in Sierra Leone because we have made accountability and transparency the hallmark of our administration,” he noted.
In his remarks President Bio thanked the Executive Chairman of Bo Rangers for what he said was a beautiful example by in erecting a state-of-the-art clubhouse, the first of its kind in the country. He said that everybody gathered at the event looked happy for the ways football was being played in the country.
“This spirit you have shown provides an opportunity for the players to serve as role models and ambassadors. I, therefore, urge the players to be good examples in the pursuit of their career,” he encouraged them.
President Julius Maada Bio said that his emphasis on Himan Capital Development was to make sure that everyone realised his/her dream and to add to the development of the nation. He pleaded with all Sierra Leoneans to work harder to actualise those potential, which he said were good for self-development.
“I thank the leadership of Bo Rangers Football Club for this impressive work. The once defunct Bo Rangers Football Club is now an epitome of great admiration. This infrastructure has never been seen anywhere in the country.
“On that note, I want to say a big thank you to BabadiKamara and all stakeholders of the club for your leadership in transforming this club. I wish you all the best and thank you everyone,” he concluded.
WAFA Approves six Delegates
The Western Area Football Association has on Monday, 24 May,2021 approved six delegates through the executive meeting held at the secretariat.
The statement continued that the executive unanimously agreed that, Mount Aureol SLIFA Football Club now participating in the ongoing Sierra Leone Premier has been replaced with the Blackhall Road Strikers Football Club as the new delegate in the coming elective congress selected for the 4th and the 5th June, 2021.
Below were the approved mention persons as delegate in the Western Area Region.
1.Ahmed Samba Turay- Vice Chairman Western Area Football Association
2.AlhajiAbdulrahman Davies- Chairman Urban District Football Association
3. Mohamed Bello Yillah- Chairman Rural District Football Association
4. Raymond Samuel Lewis- Kissy All stars Football Club
5. IssaConteh- Blackhall Road Strikers Football Club
6. Collins Thomas – Murray Town Rovers Football Club.