As it continues to engage key stakeholders of local councils across the country, the National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) Secretariat has on Tuesday, 29th March 2022 met with top management of the Koidu New-Sembehun City Council (KNCC) and the Kono District Council (KDC) respectively, to discuss their performances in the 2021 Monitoring Report. On the implementation of action points highlighted in the current NACS, both the City and District Councils in Kono have a compliance score of 50% and 55% respectively.
Section 5(1)(c) of the Anti-Corruption Act of 2008 as amended in 2019 provides for the coordination of the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy, which gives coordinating powers to the Commissioner of the ACC. The Commission therefore helps public bodies to identify corruption vulnerabilities in public offices and means of combating them in a bid to improve public service delivery.
While welcoming the team from NACS, the Mayor of KNCC acknowledged the good work of the ACC and affirmed that they being receivers of public funds should be subjected to scrutiny by the Commission. He therefore entreats all to take the implementation of the Strategy seriously.
The Deputy Director of NACS Secretariat, Edita Fofana, while giving the purpose of the meeting informed her audience that the engagement is geared towards deepening the ownership of the Integrity Management Committees (IMCs) within the councils and to enhance accountability, transparency and integrity. She said, according to the Report, the two councils that did exceptionally well were able to do so because of the backing they got from their top management. She therefore encouraged the local councils in Kono to emulate those steps.
The Director of NACS Secretariat Nabilahi-Musa Kamara said that the two local councils in Kono were presided upon to seek to ascertain compliance with the action points allocated to them by NACS as the Secretariat is more of a preventive mechanism. The Director noted that the prevention drive is the most important in the fight against corruption, as prosecution and conviction will only point out to the fact that the system is faulty.
He furthered that the IMCs should be monitored and looked after by the top management of the councils and it should not be seen as an ACC Strategy. In all of these, he underscored, the Internal Auditors should not be marginalized but should be given a seat at the management table for better coordination and compliance.