In its quest to heighten public awareness on the Pay No Bribe campaign (PNB), the Northern Regional Office of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Thursday 18th May 2017 engaged the management and staff of Electricity, Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) at their Electricity Road Office, in Makeni.
In his statement, ACC Regional Manager North, Abu Bakarr Kamara, informed his audience that 4.7 million British pounds is provided by the UK Government as financial and technical assistance for the PNB programme. Manager Kamara stated that the PNB is jointly led by the Anti-Corruption Commission and the Office of the Chief of Staff in collaboration with relevant MDAs. The PNB platform is funded by UK Aid and GoSL, with Coffey International providing technical support to the ACC and GoSL in the implementation of the project, Mr. Kamara furthered.
Manager Kamara noted that Sierra Leoneans deserve better living condition which would be realized in a bribe-free environment. He highlighted some of the areas within the operations of EDSA where members of the public reported to have paid a bribe like: avoid disconnection, meter replacement, new connection and reconnection.
ACC Public Education Officer, Abdulai Saccoh underscored the importance of electricity noting that it is one of the engines of a nation’s growth. Saccoh stated that the public sector would only become viable when workers of these institutions put patriotism above greed.
The Public Educator urged staff of EDSA to act as players in the PNB project, and not spectators. He cautioned them that though the PNB is not prosecution focused, there are administrative sanctions that would be invoked.
The Information, Communication and Technology Personnel and Acting Station Head EDSA, Makeni, Sanie Bangura commended the ACC for its resolve to tackle bribery in the public sector. Bangura stated that as staff of EDSA they believe in the PNB campaign and promised on behalf of his colleagues to institute control measures that will address bribery incidences in their operations.
During the plenary, EDSA staff highlighted a number of challenges, such as: lack of electrical spare parts and new ones, non-availability of pre-paid meters, delay in the expansion of the network and insufficient operational vehicles. They called on the management of EDSA to resolve these issues in order to ensure accessible, affordable and efficient electricity supply to the public.