By Jane B. Mansaray…………………………
Justice John Bosco Allieu yesterday remanded three accused persons Dauda Amid Koroma, Executive Director of “Needy Today”, a Non Governmental Organization, Jessy Jim Brima Kpagoi Programme Manager and Alfred Mustapha Bangura Finance Officer of the said NGO for the offenses of misappropriation filed in by the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) against all accused persons.
The three accused persons were yesterday arraigned on twenty four counts related indictment ranging from misappropriation of donor funds contrary to Section 37 of sub-section (1) of the ACC Act No.12 of 2008 to giving advantage to a public officer contrary to Section 28 sub-section (1) (a) of 2008.
The particulars of indictment state that the accused persons on diverse dates in 2015 and 2016 in Makeni, Northern Province of Sierra Leone being Executive Director of the Needy Today (TNT) dishonestly misappropriated funds close to one Billion Leones meant for the protection of vulnerable groups during the Ebola Virus Disease outbreak response project and also gave advantage of three Million Leones to one Sulaiman Bah, Internal Auditor of Goal Sierra Leone as an inducement to discontinue audit of funds at the above mentioned NGO in Makeni.
Various sums of money with different cheque numbers were withdrawn from a current account number 0212550242101 from the Rokel Commercial Bank.
The accused in their plea pleaded not guilty to the indictments and were represented by Lawyer C.F. Edwards.
Lawyer Edwards on behalf of the accused persons applied for bail and was not objected to by ACC prosecutor.
In his ruling on the bail application made by defense counsel, Justice Allieu said although bail was not objected to by prosecuting counsel, it was for him to exercise his discretion.
Based on the huge public outcry of transparency and accountability of Ebola funds, the accused persons were refused bail pursuant to Section 79 of the Criminal Procedure Act No.32 of 1916.
The matter was adjourned to the 13th March 2017 for hearing.