By Amin Kef Sesay
On Thursday 10 September 2020, the Anti- Corruption Commission (ACC) and the Africa Young Voices (AYV) Media Empire officially signed a Memorandum of Understanding, at the AYV Tower Hill offices in Freetown, which will see both parties cooperating in disseminating relevant information to the public on corruption matters.
Welcoming guests to the ceremony, AYV’s Lamrana Bah explained that both parties have been cooperating for some time now and want to strengthen the ties between them.
Giving a brief background to the event, the Director of Public Education and External Outreach in the ACC, Patrick Sandi said though they have been partnering with the media institution over the years, they are desirous of further enhancing that partnership and the MOU will cement the strong bond that had existed between the two institutions.
He further maintained that their choice of the AYV is due to its accessibility by the ordinary man in the most remote part of the country. It is the desire of the ACC to let their message in the fight against corruption reach the farthest corner in the country. In this regard, the ACC had been in negotiations with the AYV prior to this signing with meetings held between the ACC Czar and the AYV CEO.
In his own statement, the Deputy Commissioner of the ACC, Augustine Foday Ngobie expressed appreciation to the media, especially for the support given throughout the years. He furthered that he is representing the Commissioner, Francis Ben Kaifala Esq. who is out of the country on some important official assignment. He maintained that the fight against graft is done through several pillars, among which is the public education sector, observing that the media’s function in this sector is vital to their work.
The ACC, he went on, believes it cannot fight corruption without the people and a credible institution that is nationally known and listened to is of great value and importance in this fight. He called on the AYV to join them in this fight for the good of the country, assuring that they will stand by the institution and give it all the support it needs in the fight.
Speaking on behalf of the AYV, CEO, Amb. Anthony Navo Jnr. digressed a little, recalling the ideology of the AYV, which was established to complement the efforts of the Government and institutions in the development of Sierra Leone. He furthered that they have a wide listening public, both at home and abroad. He recalled the partnership done with the EU in 2018 to cover the elections, this, he said, is a major partnership. He disclosed that 8 weeks ago the AYV signed a partnership with the National Sports Authority (NSA), less than 48 hours ago, they also signed another MOU with Stats SL, and now they are signing another MOU with the ACC.
The AYV is desirous of seeing a corrupt free society in Sierra Leone, he stressed and assured the ACC that they will join them and other institutions to fight corruption. He furthered that the ceremony is merely a formal way to cement the relationship between them as the AYV had always been cooperating with them in the fight against graft.
Giving the vote of thanks, Samuel Wise Bangura of the AYV stressed that whilst partnering with the ACC, the AYV will not compromise its principles and will carry out its duty to the nation in accordance with its policy of disseminating credible information to the public.
The signing of the MOU by both the CEO of the AYV and the Deputy Commissioner of the ACC climaxed the meeting, followed by photos of the historic event.