The Deputy Minister of Health and Sanitation, Ms. Madina Rahman , has discredited the relevant portions pertaining to her in the much-talked -about audit on the Ebola funds by the Office of the Auditor General in Sierra Leone.
Due to the audit of the management of the ebola funds, the Auditor General’s Office alleged that “There were inadequate controls over the disbursement of funds. For instance, payments which exceeded Le14 billion ($3.11 million) were made from the Emergency Health Response and Miscellaneous Accounts without any supporting documents to substantiate the utilisation of such funds. Further payments which exceeded Le11 billion ($2.44 million) were made from the same accounts without adequate supporting documents such as receipts, invoices…delivery notes…” . The audit named several public officials and institutions which it alleged took part in the alleged activities
MADINA RAHMAN : IT IS INSULTING TO ME
The audit report, for instance, alleged that Madam Madina Rahman withdrew Le 750,000 without payment vouchers and supporting documents. The Deputy Minister, who is presently attending a conference in Geneva, called Cocorioko yesterday to dispute the allegations and provided details of what she said placed the withdrawal of the said funds in its correct perspective .
She said that the money had nothing to do with Ebola. Rather, the Le 750,000 was meant for registration of her official vehicle. She said she has in her possession a letter from the Ministry of Transport and Aviation informing her that an official vehicle had been assigned her and she was told to proceed to the Sierra Leone Roads Authority to register the vehicle. “We picked up the vehicle and went to the SLRA to register it, because the Minister of Transport and Aviation told me that her Ministry had to register it , ” she added. Madina Rahman noted however that the SLRA did not accept the check the Finance Department had issued for a check of Le 750, 000. My Ministry issued the check ; therefore I cashed it and paid for the registration of the vehicle”, she continued.
She said that Sierra Leoneans should hold their judgement on the audit and wait for the findings of Parliament.
Ms .Madina Rahman stated that members of the opposition were rejoicing about the audit, thinking that it would hurt President Ernest Koroma and the All People’s Congress ( APC ) Government . She noted that to their surprise, when the findings of the audit are released by Parliament , plus the recommendations , the opposition will realize that the audit had hurt them more because most of the people involved in the management of the Ebola funds were connected to the opposition.
Madam Rahman also observed that contrary to what the opposition felt, the audit is not pointing fingers at the Government, but individuals and institutions. She told Cocorioko that when the facts of the Le 750,000 are known, she will be exonerated .
Madina Rahman said that everybody know how much she has sacrificed her time, ability and sweat to help Sierra Leone win the war against Ebola . She said that as a nursing director in the U.S, who was paid thousands of dollars monthly, before she got appointed in the government , it would be very insulting to her, should anybody believe that she would involve herself in chicanery for Le 750, 000 , which amounts to only U.S $ 150. “But whether it involved hundreds or thousands of dollars, my reputation is too big for me in engage in any corruption . My name has never been mentioned before in any financial misconduct in all the places I have worked in life, ” Madam Rahman asserted.
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