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Sierra Leone News: Former NASSIT Director, Chair face Court

The former Director General of the National Social Security and Insurance Trust (NASSIT), Joseph Sedu Mans, and the former Chair of the Board of Trustees of NASSIT, Yeabu M.D. Kamara, appeared before Justice Miatta Samba on Wednesday 30th January 2019 to answer to corruption charges levied by the ACC. The matter is to be tried by a Judge alone and not with jury based on an application made by the ACC Prosecutor Lawyer Kelvin Masibo. The Prosecutor noted that he had four witnesses in Court, but has challenges with the documents that the witnesses should focus their testimony on. Documents were to be served to opposing counsel but were not because of the size and number of pages of documents. The judge ordered the ACC lawyer to serve the defence counsel. On 16th September 2016, in Freetown, both the accused allegedly misappropriated Le6 billion of public funds by authorising and facilitating the disbursement and payment to the SISIMI NASSIT medical project. The money was meant for the provision of an urgent care delivery service system to provide medical services in Sierra Leone. They were charged with six counts ranging from engaging into projects without prior planning, conspiracy to commit a corruption offence, wilfully failing to comply with the law relating to the tendering of contracts and misappropriation of public funds contrary to Section 36(1) of the Anti-Corruption Act No. 12 of 2008. On Wednesday 16th January 2019, Le500 million bail was granted to each of the accused by Justice Samba with a surety each. Joseph Sedu Mans was the Director General of NASSIT from 2014 to the 31st May 2018 and had the overall responsibility for the supervision of all NASSIT activities. Yeabu M.D. Kamara was the Chair of the Board of Trustees of NASSIT from 2014 to December 2017. The Court matter was adjourned to 13th February 2019.

MJB/30/1/19

By Mohamed J. Bah

Thursday January 31, 2019.

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