Sierra Leone: The Mayor of Kenema City Council (KCC), Joseph Samba Kelfala on Tuesday 24th November 2015 apologized to Legislators in the Well of Parliament over the Le20 Million bribery scandal allegation proven wrong by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).
The KCC Mayor last year (2014) publicly accused legislators on Democracy Radio 98.1 interview that the KCC budget was withheld because council refused to pay MPs a bribe of Le 20 million.
Members of the Parliamentary Committee on Finance and Economic Development had rejected the budget expenditure of the Kenema City Council for the year 2014 and 2015, stating they found the “expenditures unreliable”.
The allegation by council caused public uproar and MPs lambasted and accused of not serving the interest of the state.
Mayor Joseph Samba Kelfala accused some lawmakers to have asked for bribes before they could endorse the budget. He was summoned to parliament for questioning, where he again repeated his allegation, which was sent to the ACC for investigation.
The Mayor also accused the central government of unfairness in the distribution of resources from the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) and particularly to the people of Kenema district.
He accused government for withholding resources to his council tantamount to a security risk, claiming it has resulted in the unkempt state of roads within the city and its surroundings.
The allegation caused Parliament to refuse further requests by the KCC for the approval of the budget for the development of Kenema, East of Sierra Leone.
The Anti-Corruption Commission of Sierra Leone (ACC) intervenes and investigated the Committee and Members of Parliament accused of the alleged corrupt act but were exonerated causing Parliament to demand an open apology which the Mayor of KCC complied to.
The Mayor said he had consulted his lawyer for advice on the conclusion of the matter that was referred to the ACC on his alleged bribe scandal with Parliament and tendered his unreserved apologies on behalf of himself and the Kenema City Council to the Parliament of Sierra Leone.