A release from the country’s anti graft body has stated that three National Revenue Authority staff are to cough up Le300,000,000 (three hundred million leones ) as part of a settlement agreement reached with the Commission.
The three are Messers Sama Sesay, Abdul Mohamed Kargbo and Joseph Conteh. These individuals are revenue officers of the NRA attached to the Immigration Department. The three are to repay the sum of three hundred millions leones according to the Commission.
Each of the three, according to the agreement, should pay Le100,000,000. All three have already paid Le50,000,000. They have also committed to pay in full the balance as at 31st July ,2019.
The ACC says it started an investigation in April,2019 into the operations of the NRA Staff attached at the Immigration Department headquarters in Freetown, following reports that funds generated at the Department were not properly accounted for as there are variances between the original receipts issued to customers and the duplicate copies maintained by NRA.
The ACC notes that their investigations have discovered a long standing corrupt practice known as ‘carding’, which is a fraudulent process through which public servants place a card under the original receipt so the actual amount written on it does not get recorded on the duplicate, which remains as the actual record at the NRA .
The Anti-graft body has reportedly raised substantial amounts of moneys running into billions of leones through such settlements, even though many have condemned the practice from the perspective that it has no legal basis. The ACC has also not been able to make public the total amount normally owed to the state before entering into the settlement agreement in some cases like that of the former NRA boss, Haja Kallah Kamara and many more.
The ACC Commissioner is pushing for an amendment to the ACT to include the issue of creating room for out of court settlement and other issues with a view to make corruption a very expensive enterprise in the country, which Sierra Leoneans would defiantly not venture to commit.