SOUTH KOREAN AMBASSADOR PRESENTS MAHESH NANDWANI AS CONSUL TO SIERRA LEONE

The name Mahesh Nandwani has not only become a household name in Sierra Leone but also his companies are also currently serving as some of the breadbaskets to the national economy. His companies’ immense contribution to the national economy must have paved the way for his international recognition, as one of the most trusted investors that can be relied upon to partner with. It was against this backdrop that the South Korean Government has seen him as the fittest person to represent its country in Sierra Leone.

It was during a courtesy visit to the Mayor of Freetown, Yvonne Aki-Sawyer on Tuesday 18th October, the Ambassador of the Republic of South Korea to Sierra Leone, HE Kim Young Chae, introduced the Chief Executive Officer of Pee Cee and Sons, His Excellency Mahesh Nandwani, as the new Honorary Consul of the Republic of South Korea to Sierra Leone. 

The introduction took place at the New City Hall building in Freetown, where Ambassador Chae and his delegation were meeting with the Mayor of Freetown, Yvonne Aki-Sawyer, to discuss some issues which included the New City Hall building, which was funded by the government of the Republic of South Korea, the forthcoming 60th-anniversary celebrations of the diplomatic ties between South Korea and Sierra Leone among other things. 

Ambassador Chae was taken on a conducted tour of the building where the 60th-anniversary celebrations are to take place.

The new Honorary Consul of the Republic of South Korea to Sierra Leone, H.E. Mahesh Nandwani, is a renowned businessman of excellent standing in Sierra Leone and other countries whose innovation has helped many Sierra Leoneans.

H.E. Mahesh Nandwani is the owner and CEO of JOLAKS, Milla Group of Companies, and Pee Cee and Sons. As Honorary Consul, he is expected to deal with all consular services of the Republic of South Korea.

Ambassador Chae heaped praises on the new Honorary Consul, HE Mahesh Nandwani, whom he said will be an excellent representative of the Republic of South Korea in Sierra Leone

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JOSEPH KOROMA BAGS ORANGE SOCIAL VENTURE PRIZE AWARDS

Joseph Koroma, aSierra Leonean innovator has won the 12th edition of the Orange Social Venture Prize Competition held during the first World Mobile Congress (WMC) in Kigali, Rwanda for an innovative project known as Life Blood-Sierra Leone. 

Seventeen (17) countries where Orange Group is operating in both Africa and the Middle East participated in the 2022 edition of OSVP in which Orange (SL) finalists clinched the first international grand prize award.

Life Blood Sierra Leone is a digital health platform designed to address the problem of acute shortage of blood products in the country’s healthcare delivery system. The system is designed to, among other things increase public awareness about safe blood services, and increase the level of voluntary blood donation in the country with an improved facility to administer blood transfusion as well as the National Safe Blood Service.

Joseph Koroma is one of the eight finalists who contested in the National category general prize award of (Old Note) Le100,000, 000.00 in September this year. In an exclusive interview, Joseph said: “In my country, the mortality rate is high and the main factor is the limited availability of blood banks. So I am hoping that this project will address the problem of acute shortage of blood in the country’s health care system.” 

It must be underscored that at the national level, Orange Sierra Leone has been organizing the Orange Social Venture Prize (OSVP) competition. The 4th Edition was held on the 1st of September 2022 in which eight (8) finalists participated for a whooping sum of One Hundred and Fifty Million Leones (Le150M).

According to the Head of Public Relations at Orange SL, Annie Wonnie Katta, Orange is positioned to be the lead digital partner for startups in Africa and the Middle East. This is why Orange Middle East & Africa (OMEA) initiated OSVP some 12 years ago to reward the best technological projects with positive impact and solutions to social challenges mainly in the area of education, health, agriculture, mobile payments, or sustainable development in Africa and the Middle East.

Copyright ©️ Heroes Media Newspaper

Orange Sierra Leone

By Moses Kay Fembeh

Orange Sierra Leone is one of the leading telecommunications in the country, but it has been involved in several activities that have negatively impacted the lives of its entrusted customers. It could be recalled that after the August 10 insurrection in the country, the government of Sierra Leone in collaboration with the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and Sierra Leone Police commencedan investigation on the top management of Orange Sierra Leone for deliberately obstructing justice by refusing to cooperate with the special investigation committee that was set up by His Excellency Dr Julius Bio. The investigation committee was set up as a result of the August 10 insurrection.

According to the Sierra Leone police, the top management of Orange Sierra Leone is refusing to cooperate with the committee by not handing over the call data of eighty subscribers who are persons of interest to the set-up committee. As one of the leading telecommunications in the country, this could indicate that they have not only destroyed customers’ trust, but they have undermined their trustworthiness, and this act of theirs, has been the apprehension of the work of the investigation committee. 

Many customers have also expressed their dissatisfaction with the way and manner Orange SL has been treating them, especially in the area of data usage or subscription and orange money. 

“If you dial*800#, using orange sim, you will see options like daily, monthly and weekly subscription. For instance, if one buys data under the monthly subscription or any of the three options as the case may be, the data will not last with him/her for even two weeks,” said an angry subscriber. 

A staff of the company who prefer anonymity said, their customers are truly vulnerable and certain people in their company disclosed customers’ contacts, names, and passwords to those fraudulent syndicate boys so that the latter would be able to call the particular customers and inform them that they have won a huge amount of money and sometimes promise offering them jobs which are always not true. Some even claim to be men of God and in the end, ask the customers to pay a certain amount for their prayers to be immediately answered.

Donald Cole, a resident of Eastern Freetown said his orange money was deducted from his Orange money wallet without giving his phone to anyone and without doing any transactions. “To my greatest surprise, I just received a text message on 21st September 2022 stating that I have cashed out five thousand New Leones (5,000NLS), but I did not give my phone to anyone nor do I cash out any money, how? I call Customer care 111 they said to me to wait the following day, and since then no one has gotten back to me,” she remarked. 

The Public Relations Officer said, they, as a mobile company, cannot do such and that their brand is getting bigger every day, and he does not believe what the public says about them, but this is a proven issue.

Orange SL is not protecting its customers from fraudsters who keep on calling people and telling them that they have won a certain amount of money, only for such a person to send money to them. 

Fatmata Kanu an Orange SL user told this medium that she has been receiving messages from Orange SL that she has won three hundred new leones. “At first I was surprised when I received that call because I did not play any lottery or gamble with my orange number, and what got me disappointed is when the caller asked me to send money to him and I just told him to deduct it from the said amount of that he claimed I won. 

Elizabeth Sesay, another Orange SL customer and a businesswoman at Sackville Street, said, she received a call in August 2022, from Orange SL, that she has won twelve million old Leones. At first, she was joyful, but what baffles her was when she was asked to send her account details so that they could send the money to her account which was never true. 

Customers want to know how fraudsters get access to their numbers, names, and addresses. Orange Sierra Leone should continue protecting their customers from fraudsters if only they want to maintain their credibility. 

Radio sensitization is not enough to stop fraudulent practices, the system needs to be protected. Heroes Media has been trying to get information from the Director of Business, Edward Sesay, but this medium has not been able to get in touch with him. However, in a telephone interview with the Public Relations Officer, she told this medium that, she cannot comment on any issues that have to do with Call Data of the August 10 insurrection, as the matter is under police investigation.

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Africel Rehabilitates St. Luke’s Junior Secondary School.

On Tuesday 18 October 2022, Africell Sierra Leone commenced the reopening ceremony for St. Luke’s Junior Secondary School at Wilberforce village in Freetown. The occasion was graced by Her Excellency Dr. Mrs. Fatima Bio, as the keynote speaker. The ceremony started with an opening prayer by Rev. Fr. Col.  Desmond S. Lebbie.

By Moses Kay Fembeh

Several representatives from government institutions such as NaCSA, the Ministry of Education, the Armed Forces Technical and Education College (AFTEC), and private institutions such as Africell Sierra Leone, the Press, Parents, and Well-wishers.

Madam Elizabeth Cole, not her real name, was the chairperson of the occasion; in her opening remarks, she applauded Africell Sierra Leone, First Lady, parents, and parishioners for making it possible to actualise a dream that had passed two decades, and she described the ceremony as historic. She gave a brief background of the name “Saint Luke”. “Today indeed is a historic day for the Catholic Diocese of Freetown, there would have been no perfect day than the reopening of St. Luke’s Junior Secondary School, a school that is named after St. Luke who was an educationist, a writer, one of the writers of the gospel and a doctor,” she said.

She furthermore said, “At Luke, this is the day the Lord has made, that we should be glad indeed. For several years now we had a dream to establish a secondary school, but our founding father, priest Francisco and with the help of all the parishioners helped to build a primary school at the time. After several years of consideration, the council of parishioners had another dream to build a secondary school, and the name suggested was to be named St. Luke’s Model Catholic Secondary School but this dream was not materialized for several reasons, Her Excellency and all present here, God has time for everything, this year 2022 is a remarkable year for St. Luke’s Junior School to be opened today. St Luke is with you, Bishops and all present we want you to take this school as your baby, ” she remarked.

The declaration of the purpose of the gathering was done By Rev. Vincent E. Davies, who first started with opening greetings starting with our First Lady and all that representatives and called a few names of distinguished persons, such as Archbishop Edward Tamba Charles the proprietor of the school, who was not present. Rev. Davies said, the proprietor had an unavoidable engagement to attend and was deputized by Rev. Fr. Dr. David Kamanda, he also recognized Mr. Shadi Gerjawi of Africell Sierra Leone, Mr. Edwin Kamara of NASSIT, Mr. Peter Komeh representing Sierra Leone Road Authority (SLRA) and everyone gathered. “To the education committee, the school reformation has been in operation and line with the free quality education since 2018 under the ticket of his Excellency Dr. Julius Maada Bio, and the Ministry of Basic and Secondary School Education (MBSSE) has made good progress, but there is more to do as the education has already lost its value to our social life and the pandemic, we believe in the government desires that every child must be educated through the free quality education. We should also ensure that our children are taught in schools by well-trained and qualified teachers, and the school should be a free territory where learners meet to learn positive things about life and community so they, too, can become the true future leaders we crave. We should compass sound knowledge in them. A school that shall create for quality learnings, and the government should add more value to the sciences, Commerce, and humanity,” he said.

Shadi Gerjawi, the Managing Director of Africell Sierra Leone, during his short statement, thanked president Julius Maada Bio and the government for seeing education as a valuable tool for human capital development. He also thanked the St. Luke’s Junior Secondary School administration and the teachers for their profound sacrifices made and continuous support.

Col. Richard Bockarie the Director of Studies at the Armed Forces Technical and Education College (AFTEC) also thanked everyone and encouraged parents to send their kids to both St. Luke’s primary and junior secondary school, and there will be an initiative that will help them to monitor parents that are in the Barracks to encourage their kids to study; she talked about other facilities that will help the kids to learn.

Her Excellency Mrs Fatima Bio gave the keynote address; during her speech, she also stood on the existing protocol by thanking and appreciating everyone for their timely sacrifices. Furthermore, she admonished religious leaders to be careful with the kind of sermons they should preach to people. It could not be a sermon of hate speeches and they have a role to play in their communities and that role is to help minimize rape and early teenage pregnancy. So, the girl child can become educated and responsible, but if her right to education is abused for a petite bride price, she cannot sustain a family of five for a day. She also encouraged parents to send their children to school and make sure that they (girls) are prevented from rape as “It is better to prevent rape before waiting for justice,” she said.

The cutting of tape was done by the First Lady, Mrs Fatima Bio of the Republic of Sierra Leone, and the inspection of the school building was done by her and Dr David Kamanda, followed by the gathering. The vote of thanks was done by a class 5 pupil of the school

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INDIGENES OF SERABU APPLAUD EMMANUEL PIUS RICHARDS FOUNDATION

By Boss Ezekiel 

The people of Serabu, Bumpeh NgaoChiefdom have applauded Emmanuel Pius Richards Foundation (EPRF) for its tremendous effort in supporting the people with health, agriculture, education, and empowering youths with human capital development skills in the Chiefdom.

Over the years the EPRF has been focused on implementing programs to improve agriculture, Technical Vocational training (TVET), infrastructure and health in the chiefdom, as well as complementing the effort of President Julius Maada Bio, especially in education which is the government’s flagship program.

The Emmanuel Pius Richards Foundation had been contributing immensely to improving the lives of the people of Serabu by providing them with skills training as well as boosting them with agricultural equipment and seedlings to farmers across the chiefdom. The foundation exists not only to support the people of Serabu but has shown the responsibility of bringing unity and peace among the people of the Chiefdom.

During the previous holy month of Ramadan, the foundation distributed 80 (eighty) bags of rice to all the Chief Imams in Bumpeh Chiefdom as a gift from the EPRF to support them (the Imams) during the holy month of Ramadan.

The EPRF has also recently constructed a magnificent Multipurpose Hall at the Serabu vocational secondary school which will accommodate over 117 pupils and will be used for external examination purposes and other activities in Serabu town. The Multipurpose Hall comprises offices, a dressing room and a library for the Serabu vocational secondary school. The construction of the Multipurpose Hall has provided relief for hundreds of school children that were always working over 117 miles away from Serabu to Bumpehto take their external exams.

This effort showed how the foundation had put a great effort into improving the livelihood of the people of Serabu through the directives of the Chief Executive Officer, Mr Emmanuel Pius Richards of the Foundation.

The foundation has also donated exercise books, geometry sets, and pencils to the less privileged and remote communities across the Chiefdom. The foundation has immensely contributed to empowering youths in the chiefdom and afforded them agricultural materials such as seedlings and other machinery. The empowering of youth by EPRF has served as a complement to fulfill the efforts of the government of President Julius Maada Bio in providinghuman capital development.

Emmanuel Pius Richards is making life better for his people and also a blessing to the people of Serabu, Bompeh Ngao Chiefdom.

Copyright ©️ Heroes Media Newspaper

YELLOW POLITICS MIGHT DESTROY SIERRA LEONE


By Moses Kay Fembeh.

Thomas Paine, An American Revolutionary pamphleteer, expressed in Common Sense (1776) the government is, at best, “a necessary evil.” he furthermore said, “Lawyers, judges, and police are needed to secure the individual’s life and liberty, but their coercive power may also be turned against the people. The problem, then, is to devise a system that gives the government the power necessary to protect individual liberty but also prevents those who govern from abusing that power”.

“Great anger and violence can never build a nation,” said Nelson Mandela. 

Sierra Leone is a post-colonial conflict country and has changed several leaders. The dark cloud of hatred, greed, selfishness, and jealousy among the politicians and the masses in Sierra Leone is alarming. The yellow Politics currently playing in Sierra Leone might kill Sierra Leoneans of today or soon if drastic measures are not taken. The masses and some sincere politicians in the ruling party could attest that things are getting worse, and the issue of unemployment could not be ignored in conversations where the truth needs to be conveyed

Like Nelson Mandela said in his quote, “Violence & great anger can never build a nation.” That is to say, if the ruling party and the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) party do not see themselves as brothers and sisters to forget about violence and power thirst, Sierra Leone will lick it old vomits which we all pray not to happen now and forever more.

Sierra Leone is a small country with approximately 7.8 million people, according to the December 2021 Mid-Term Population and Housing Census

However, Freetown Major Yvonne Aki Sawyer was invited to the Criminal Investigation Department CID headquarters at Pademba Road on Thursday to answer specific questions about the obstruction of police personnel on duty. The Heroes Media have been trying to reach her Worship Aki Sawyer to get her side of the story but to no avail.

Ady Macauley former Anti-Corruption Commissioner(ACC) during the tenure of his Excellency Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma, was also arrested and detained a few weeks back by the Sierra Leone Police to answer certain questions that have to do with the August 10 insurrection. The Heroes Media was also unable to reach Ade Macauley to hear his own side of the story. According to the personnel at the CID headquarters, they believe that Macauley incited violence during one of his AVY programs sometime before the 10th of August 2022. From his AVY interview speech, he said “It is clear in the Constitution that nobody does not need to take/have police permission before a such person could demonstrate for his/her right, you do not need the IG permission either.”

Meanwhile, detaining opposition and opposition leaders inciting violence is not the way forward for sustainable development and long-term nation-building. I presume, as peace-loving citizens, we must instil peace and humility in ourselves and those who believe in us as leaders. Sierra Leoneans should not act like the people in the days of Moses; leadership does not come from the East, North, South & West but from the one true God. We should acknowledge the bitter truth and move along with development.

Everybody can give birth to a child, but not everybody can be called a father. A father is not a title given to a man, but it is a privilege and a special grace bestowed upon him. Therefore, a father is mandated to take care of his household, regardless of the wayward sons and daughters under his control. His anger must not allow him to swear to them to perish or to lead underprivileged life while the father has many beautiful and abundant resources and opportunities in store for his children. On the other hand, the children must not make life tougher and more miserable for the father.

On that note, the president of a country is the father and he must preside well over those he rules. H. E Bio’s manifesto talks/campaign in 2017/2018 were motivating and appeasing too many Sierra Leoneans, mainly when he themed it as “New Direction.” But no one can tell why the sudden change and the why inflation continues to take over the country.

The British Broadcasting Cooperation (BBC) on Wednesday 19 October announced that Ghana is currently going through some National difficulties. So one can say that Sierra Leone is not the only country facing difficulties. Countries like Ghana, Liberia, and others are going through the same.

Salieu Kamara, a businessman at Siaka Steven Street, Freetown, said that President Bio’s government is far better than the past government as the president is working tirelessly to ensure that the lives of its citizens are better, he quoted, “before a nation could be built for the good of everyone, one has to suffer or perish.” He further said that President Bio is a man of vision, and his slow movement toward development will be thanked for after he leaves office.

Susan J. Jawara said, “President Bio does not have a leadership quality and should not even desire to go for the second term, because he will not win that election. He has failed us, we didn’t vote for him for things to be tough for us, and some of us are single parents. We don’t have jobs to sustain us and our dependents.”

The fear of some Sierra Leoneans, especially those in the opposition parties, is that if His Excellency President Bio and his government leave office next year or at any predestined time. What will be his fate? Well as a journalist I cannot comment on that but I have left it in the care of my readers to decide. We have seen rich people become poor overnight, and the poor become rich, like Abraham Lincoln from nothingness to position of influence, power and fame, nobody knows tomorrow.

It is time for yellow Politics to stop, parents must stop injecting bad politics in their children. Heroes Media Newspaper could attest to the ill fact that there are confident kids in the Kissy community whose parents have warned them not to sit in the school buses provided by the government of Sierra Leone through taxpayers’ money to aid pupils in a school in the morning and take them back to various destinations on. If a parent could warn her child not to use a property that belongs to her, then what is the lesson parents are teaching their kids? A lesson of hate, nepotism, jealousy, and conspiracy to destroy their own children’s future? Children should be children, they must be taught about their country’s traditions and cultures not to give bad counseling about any political party. If truth be told, both parties have failed Sierra Leone, so why the indecisiveness from the two parties, nobody is ready to take responsibility for their mistakes.

The two brothers Milton Margai and Albert Margai and others have done their part and gone; the few alive are not in active service today. Dr. Siaka Steven and Joseph Saidu Momoh and cohorts are no longer here with us. Ernest Bai Koroma and cohorts are off from active service.

I believe that two of the good qualities of a leader are that he must be an approachable and kindhearted leader with a forgiving spirit.

Everyone might have made bitter mistakes to themself or others, but should we continue in sin that grace may abound? This was the question Paul asked the people of his day. As a tiny Nation like ourselves should we continue to be bitter against one another that our nation may go backward? I bet, No, because we have children and those unborn babies that shall take over us. If parents and community people do not teach them the things they should do and those they should not do, I am afraid for Sierra Leone not be on the list of myths.

Nigerians and other nationals are not stupid enough to leave their countries to come down to Sierra Leone to invest here. Sierra Leoneans must remove the veils of hatred, greed, envy, tribalism, nepotism, and jealousy so that we will be able to develop one another to climb the ladder of success.

Many people wish for H. E. Bio is to leave power come 2023, whilst others pray for him to stay in control for a lifetime. But the idea of APC or any other political party taking over in June, is it the solution to Sierra Leone’s problems or another predicament? We see the ambition of Alhaji Samuel Samsung, Dr. Mathew Wilson Kamara, and Dr. Kandeh K. Yumkellah they all desire one thing which is power. The masses must not forget that these people are all human beings capable of committing evil and doing good or mistakes. Are their visions understood by the masses, or they represent their political parties?

However, lack of responsibility is a cause of immaturity, poverty, and leadership failure because there will be no clear purpose for national development.

Copyright ©️ Heroes Media Newspaper

AFRIMONEY PARTNERS WITH GT BANK

By Moses Kay Fembeh 

On Wednesday 19 October 2022, Afrimoney, and Guaranteed Trust Bank had a business partnership dialogue at the bank conference room at Wilberforce Street, Freetown.

Mr. Arthur Kallon the Corporate Officer at GT Bank, made a brief statement by thanking Afrimoney and the press for making it possible to attend the meeting at the bank. And further said that this is not the first partnership they have got with institutions and Afrimoney is no exception, as they have partnered with several local & international institutions. 

Ade Adebiyi is the Managing Director of GT Bank in Sierra Leone, he said that day is a historic day in financial inclusion strategy of the government and the regulators. He further said that they at GT Bank are happy to associate themselves with such an opportunity. He mentioned a story of one Saidu who lived in Binkoro and worked for a local nongovernmental organization, “Because the nearest bank to Saidu was a hundred kilometers from him, it became difficult for Saidu to Bank his money, but since 2016, Saidu joined Afrimoney and his necessities started going higher and he started thinking of opening an account. So one day he was listening to a Radio when he heard dial *3737# which he used to open his account through his phone with GT Bank and he was happy. But he had another problem, he asked himself,   “How do I put money in my account when banks are far away?” I believe that Saidu’s problem has been solved today because with his Afrimoney he could now deposit money in his account through Afrimoney. Because the GT Bank and Afrimoney launched wallet to wallet 264 000 (Two hundred and sixty-four thousand) customers at GTB will help them to have easy access to financial inclusion and I believe that the wallet-to-wallet will help Saidu and our customers in the 16 sixteen branches in the country to live a stress-free life.” 

Martinson Obeng Agyei the Managing Director of Afrimoney applauded his team, the press, and the management of GT Bank for hosting them and he said they as digital money operators are available to partner with financial institutions in other to ease the burden on customers who may find it difficult to leave their homes to go to the bank. He stated that customers can now access their physical money at the nearest Afrimoney agent’s posts. Agyei said they need more collaborations as they have assigned six thousand agents to serve all GT Bank customers by dialing *161#. He went on to say that collaboration like what they have with GT Bank will help the Bank customers and even those prospective Afrimoney users to establish an account with the bank. He acknowledged the MD’s story about Saidu and he said to avoid embarrassment at the bank you can deposit any amount through Afrimoney with 0.4 or 0. 6 which is not even sum up to the transport fare you will use to come to town to deposit in the hot burning sun. “Imagine you go to the bank, well-dressed up and you see those beautiful ladies behind the Teller or counter and you want to deposit fifty Leones you will feel embarrassed. So to avoid that we are happy for this collaboration and to maintain the symbiotic relationship as this is just the beginning of our partnership, we will try our best with GT Bank to make life easy for your customers and ours,” he said.

Copyright ©️ Heroes Media Newspaper

THE CHIEF IMMIGRATION OFFICER CLEARED THE AIR

“Our responsibility is to man the borders of Sierra Leone,” says the Chief Immigration officer Mr Andrew KaiKai at the Immigration Departmentwho informed journalists that it is the responsibility of his institution to man all the crossing borders of Sierra Leone. Mr Kaikai made this statement during the budget hearing exercise at the Ministry of Finance Conference room in Freetown.  He continued that in Sierra Leone some of the main focused crossing points are Gbalamuya in Kambia the crossing border between Sierra Leone and Guinea and Gendem between Sierra Leone to Liberia as well as placement of Immigration officials at those strategic areas has been done.

He explained further that the Immigration Department will continue to do its best and according to him, one of the key functions of the Immigration Department is to monitor the inflow and the outflow of people across the different border lines. “Though we are constraints with funds, my institution has made some significant strides from 2018 to 2022 and we have increased our performance in serving our customers as our priority” he expressed.

Mr KaiKai added that though the country is experiencing inflation of the US dollar exchange rate still, there is yet an increase in sales of passports. He also stressed that his government will fight harder in making sure that they control the inflation of the dollar exchange rate in the country.

Copyright ©️ Heroes Media Newspaper

MUSA KAMARA ON A SUICIDE MISSION

The sensational Leone Stars striker, and former Bo Rangers and Sierra Leone Premier League top goal-scorer Musa Noah Kamara, alias Musa Tombo attempted to inflict death himself on Thursday 13 October 2022.

By: Joseph K. B. Morison

(Heroes Media Reporter Bo City)

Kamara was the former Bo Rangers striker, he was recently caught on social media apologizing to the Executive Chairman of Bo Rangers Mr Babadi Kamara after the club terminated his contract for unprofessionalism and misconduct of his attitude towards the club and the several stories surrounding his football career.

It was hoped that Kamara’s contract with the Sierra Leone Premier League  (Bo Rangers), and his newly sign-up Libyans Football Club will be an added advantage. But to everyone’s surprise, eyewitnesses said that Kamara decided to come back home because he had heard too many gunshots in Libya and if they refused to bring him back he would kill himself to avoid the club bringing him back to Sierra Leone. 

The Heroes Media could affirm that since Kamara returned from Libya he has been Bo to sign up another contract with Bo Rangers, but there was no indication that Bo Rangers is ready to accept him back into the league, even though there were pictures of him and his former Boss Mr Babadi Kamara after his apology.

According to eyewitnesses, they said, Musa Noah Kamara was staying with a friend at the back of Southern Model School New Gerihun Road when he allegedly stabbed himself for a reason best known to himself.

However, the Sierra Leone police, the media and police relations officer two ( media 2) of the Sierra Leone police, police constable Alhaji Osman Mansaray said, they received a distressed call from the community people in Bumpewo section where it happened that Musa Noah Kamara had stabbed himself.

He continued that, the police did not waste any time but dispatched police personnel to the scene of the crime, where they met the Leone Stairs’ striker in critical condition. He affirmed that the striker was later rushed to the Bo government hospital for treatment.

Furthermore, he said, there is a law in the Sierra Leone police order act, when you attempt to commit suicide is a crime towards the State. Meanwhile, eyewitnesses believe that Musa was trying to commit suicide, as it was clear that Musa Noah Kamara asked his wife to forgive him for his predicament concerning his football career.

However, after he was taken to the hospital on Thursday he asked the nurses to discharge him and he was discharged at around 9 pm on Thursday as we saw him again on Friday parading on the major streets in Bo such as New Gerihun Road and other key streets. But he was later apprehended by some youths in the city who aided him by carrying him in a vehicle.

According to Statement from Babadi, he said, “You purported that Musa has no contract with Bo Rangers even when I submitted the same to the FA President yet still you brutally destabilized the young man just so that he doesn’t represent Bo Rangers in the Africa Champions League. You have succeeded thus far to destroy an innocent soul. Wait and see what God will do to you. Whatever we can do to help Musa as a club we will do. He remains to be one of the greatest players to ever put on the Bo Rangers Jersey and for that, we are forever grateful. It is going to be well with Musa.  Inshaallah, for the wicked, may Allah judge you according to our deeds”.

Copyright by Heroes Media Newspaper

CSO ACCUSED THE DIRECTOR OF BUDGET OF OVERRULING CONCERNS RAISED

By Boss Ezekiel

The Chief Executive Director for the Citizens Right Network Sierra Leone in a press conference held at his office Naimbana Street in Freetown told journalists that the Director of Budget from the Ministry of Finance overruled 80% of concerns raised by CSOs, NSAs, DBOCs, and PRESS during the budget hearing presentation at the Ministry of Finance headquarters in Freetown. According to him, the CRN-SL, from now on referred to as the CITIZENS RIGHTS NETWORK SIERRA LEONE, on Wednesday, 21 September 2022, embarked on monitoring the Financial Year 2023 budget bilateral discussion held at the Ministry of Finance.

After a 13-day bilateral FY 2023 discussion on the budget, citizen RIGHTS NETWORK SIERRA LEONE has concluded its comprehensive Report to outline best practices. In its detailed report, corrupt practices that negated international best practices were identified as well as gaps during the process were noted, and concerns about the process were observed as well.

The Director continued that CRN-SL commends the Ministry of Finance over its recent activity status updates during the launching of the bilateral budget discussion on 21/09/2022 in the conference hall at the Ministry of Finance. It is important however to emphasize that such updates were needed. “During the opening of the budget hearing, the vice president, Dr Juldeh Jalloh, highlighted the tight fiscal space in the national budget due to outside forces, such as the Russian-Ukraine war. He added that the war has harmful effects on the world’s economy. Against this backdrop, he advised that MDAs pay more attention to service delivery, rather than administrative spending” he explained.

Mr Koroma expressed that CRN-SL observed that 65% of MDAs did not come in time to present their budget, Finance Technical Team eclipses the FY2023 bilateral discussions and frustrated attempts by the CSOs, PRESS, DBOCS and NSAs from raising questions and turning a blind eye to the process of standing down MDAs.

According to the Director, Over 70% failed to submit the required 50 copies of their documents when presenting, and some even could not attend the FY 2023 Bilateral discussions- Such as the Office of the Chief Minister and, crucially, the National Revenue Authority (NRA). The absence of both l &2 groups defeated the process. CRN-SL also observed that the agenda prepared by the Ministry of Finance for FY2023 had loopholes where 80% of MDAs only received their first and second quarters FY2022 budget allocations, but no allocations for the third and some MDAs did not work towards the ceiling given to them by the Ministry of Finance because of their challenges and scope of operations. Amongst the ministries that made their presentation are the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, National Public Procurement Authority, Immigration Department, Human Resource Management Office, National Authorizing Office, Ministry of Defense, Government Printing Sierra Leone police, Sierra Leone Broadcasting Service, Ministry of Gender and Children Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Anti-corruption Commission, Ministry of the Western Region, Attorney General and Ministry of Justice.

The CEO expressed that the Sierra Leone Agricultural Research Institution (SLARI) faced problems with payment. As a result, they lost their scientific researchers to the University of Sierra Leone and Nala University based on their presentation. “My organization also observed that 90% of MDAs failed to follow the Finance Act of 2018 (41) of printing documents to the government printing press and Serra Leone National Shipping Company (SLNSC) Acts section (31) of the Finance Act 2019 and 2012, noted with low turnout compliance by state own institution to do business with SLNSC” he said.

He ended that Both the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank (SLCB) and Rokel Commercial Bank (RCB) denied CSOs, DBOCs, NSAs and the PRESS covering during their presentation, adding that the issue of Auto-spec to upgrading the national motor vehicles’ number plates Keep repeating every year by the Sierra Leone Road Safety Authority was laidback and mute about it during their presentation” he explained.

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NACSA BOYCOTT 2023 BUDGET HEARING PRESENTATION

By Boss Ezekiel

The Commissioner of the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA), Dr Isata Max-Kye and the team have refused to present their budget to the Ministry of Finance for the year 2023. It could be recalled that the budget is the second highest document after the constitution of any country, which has four stages such as budget formulation, budget enactment, budget implementation and budget auditing and monitoring.

The budget presentation shows transparency and accountability to citizens, and participation in the process is a key which usually happens during the formulation stage, wherein the citizens are allowed to scrutinise MDAs’ budgets together with the technical team from the Ministry of Finance, which is a statutory requirement for every MDAs including the State Own Enterprises.

The National Commission for Social Action NaCSArefused to submit their budget for the FY 2023 bilateral budget discussion which is critical to revenue generation, project implementation, accurate statistical data and several other government institutions that are important. The National Commission for Social Action NaCSA is one of the critical state own institutions that has been receiving money from the government and different foreign donors for other activities such as social safety net, agricultural activities and many more.

During COVID-19 the government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Finance gave billions of Leones to NaCSA to implement the Social safety net, cash transfer and social assistance. Over 90 percent of programs that have been implemented by the National Commission for Social Action are been founded by donors and the people of Sierra Leone need to know how these funds are been used by NaCSA. Therefore, therefore, a must that NaCSA should have presented its budget for a proper review, and transparency and accountability as one of the critical principles of the government of President Bio. If they had partaken in the process, Sierra Leoneans would have been allowed to ask critical questions through the civil society, NSA, DBOCs and the media about the challenges and successes of the current strategic plan and revenue forecast for next year but this right was blatantly boycotted by NaCSA.

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Afrimoney Partners With Commercial Mortgage Bank

By Moses Kay Fembeh

Afrimoney Sierra Leone is a local digitalize monetary transactions platform that has been very helpful to individuals, cooperation, and institutions within the country. 

Theresa Jane Wright, the Marketing Supervisor of Afrimoney in her opening remarks told members gathered about the conference and how the two energetic institutions, Afrimoney and CMB could be of great help to the people of Sierra Leone.

Velma Labor is theExecutive Director of Commercial Mortgage Bank (CMB) in the country, during her presentation at the Afrimoney conference room at Wilberforce village, sheexpressed her profound thanks and appreciation to Afrimoney and said the Commerce Montage Bank did not make any mistake in choosing Afrimoney for the easiness and comfortable space that will be created for their customers. She furthered that Afrimoney and the CMB will enjoy an excellent partnership with each other. “We are aware of digital transactions and that is why we have partnered with Afrimoney so that our customers will be very much comfortable when withdrawing and depositing money in their accounts. We care about the welfare of our customers and partners and we will continue to make sure that we render our best services to them through the monetary policy and banking system of the Central Bank of Sierra Leone,” she said. 

According to her, CMB customers will now be able to access their accounts, withdraw and deposit whatever amount they may have in their hands through Afrimoney wallet. And that CMB’s primary goal is to use innovative technology to create a better banking experience, and by the end of the year, CMB will be boasting of being an innovative financial institution that offers customers digital banking solutions that will assess our customers’ current and cooperative needs in the near future for a better finance inclusion and they are encouraging non-governmental organizations and other cooperate institutions to bank and establish a relationship with them. Adding to that, she said Bank is now a bridging moral that presents customers with attractive services and products within the context of their businesses. She ended up by saying that CMB is grateful to the Afrimoney team and their timely response to the partnership and thanked the Afrimoneyteam and the management of CMB for their resilience and technicality during the onset of the program. She was optimistic about their partnership with Afrimoneyand National Social Security Insurance Trust (NASSIT) as their shareholder and for believing in them and the service they render to their customers and others. 

Martinson Obeng Agyei, the director of Afrimoneythanked the Managing Director of CMB and the team for believing in partnership and assured them that Afrimoney is not like any bank and banks must not see the system as a threat to financial coexistence, but as a useful tool that could be used for the benefits of all. 

Going forward, he sighted COVID-19 in 2019 when some businesses and other institutions were closed because of the spread of coronavirus and some people were working in their various homes instead of their workplaces. He believes that in the next few years companies will not survive if they do not embark on a money digitalization policy as money digitalization policy will help people to work in their homes and collect money anywhere they want instead of standing in the queue for a long time to deposit or withdraw. “Don’t forget I’m a bank customer too, why don’t we work together to build this common and affordable goal for our convenience? We should not be competing, instead, we should work hand in hand to satisfy our customers for a better future. Many times, people think that we are in this to compete. Remember, we are a mobile money platform, a non-financial institution, we are not doing what the Bank is doing, we hope to amicably work with banks. As for CMB, we are happy to work with you all and we are not going to stop at anything. We shall work with each other to bring satisfaction to our customers and today we have assigned six thousand agents to you nationwide,” he noted. 

Moreso, he said the essential product for human desire and satisfaction is the use of time. Imagine, some people will not have time to go to the bank to collect money, especially mothers who will have to go to school to pick up their kids and come back home to prepare meal for the family. These are a few of the issues why everyone needs to embark on money digitalization and with Afrimoney one can deposit any amount without going to the bank. “Presume you dressed up well and you go to meet those beautiful ladies at the bank and tell them that you want to deposit ten Leones (Le 10), they will look at you and see the way you dress up, and you will be guilty of not depositing much money and in actual sense the bank wants you to deposit money. With the digital partnership with CMB, customers can withdraw or deposit in their accounts at any time and they will be notified immediately after. Twenty hours, seven days a week and six thousand agents have been given to CMB. We hope that everything will get better if we are ready to work together,” he said

In conclusion, “To our cherish customers, continue to dial *161# and thank you to the CMB team and our fourth estate for being there for us always,” he added.

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De. Gilpin Takes RCB Higher

For any successful business venture, there are alwayssome amount of pretty competitive rivalries, it could be within the business entity or from other competitors outside the business. 

Since Dr. Ekundayo Gilpin took over the RokelCommercial Bank in 2017 as the new Managing Director, he has been tremendously doing well in the Banking industry as the brand gets bigger every day, and it is not only getting bigger by customers keeping their monies at the RC Banks in the country but also ensuring that the livelihoods of small businesses in the country are sustainable.

Dr. Ekundayo Gilpin’s hard work and dedication to the promotion of RCB have made the bank to be listed as one of the 50 Most Reputable Bank CEOs in Africa, by Reputation Poll International in 2021 and this award was not only dedicated to RCB but Sierra Leone, customers and the hardworking staff at the RCB. 

The bank continues to enlarge its marketing strategy for its customers and prospective customers by positioning itself for better service delivery that will attract prospective customers. The functioning accounts at the RC Bank are Kumbra Account, Fixed Account, Kekeh Loans, Corporate Banking and SME loans etc. 

Rugiatu Mansaray a customer of the RokelCommercial Bank in Freetown and a trader at Salaadground said that she is a living testimony of the SME Loans. “I would remember in 2021 when I applied for the SME Loan, after presenting my documents to the loan officer and all that which makes me to be eligible for the loan, the process was done easily and I was granted the loan paid within six months. RCB is truly a bank for us the average people in the country”, she said.

It is also evident that on the 1st August 2022 the Krootown Road Market women were loaned a sum of one hundred and one million old Leones by the RokelCommercial Bank, to empower women who are engaged in Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSMEs). 

In his keynote statement during the handing over ceremony of the cheque to the beneficiaries, Dr. Ekundayo Gilpin, Managing Director of the RCB said that they as a bank believe in empowerment and quality service delivery as those are few of their core values. He further said that they want to maintain the symbiotic relationship between RCBank and the market women especially those in the small and medium enterprises. He also mutated that the bankers are not only to sit under their air conditioning offices with coats and ties but to help smaller businesses grow into sustainable economies together. 

Adding to that, the Managing Director of the bank said that they have spread their hands to various market women in the Western Urban to provide loan facilities for MSMEs. This, according to him, is because women are in the majority in that sector. He went further to encourage the women to pay back the loans given to them as he said the money given out to the market women is not money that belongs to RokelCommercial Bank and management that should not be paid for, but the money that belongs to customers. “Since we believe in empowerment that is why we have given out the loan and we strongly believe as market women you will use the money wisely as it will guarantee you financial freedom,” he said.

“The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them.” Ernest Hemingway. The MD and team have expressed their trust in the market women by loaning them. The MD and team continue to work together to lift the green, white and blue flag, as they have excellent marketing relations officers and staff.

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Sierra Leone Police Media Team

As a means of promoting institutional synergy and collaboration between the two institutions, the Ombudsman of Sierra Leone – Jenkins Johnson Esq. and his team, on Wednesday 28th September 2022, paid a courtesy call on the Inspector General of Police – Mr. William Fayia Sellu, at Police Headquarters, George Street, in Freetown.

The intention of the visit was centered on building a good working relationship between the Sierra Leone Police (SLP) and the Office of the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman also used the occasion to formally congratulate Mr. William Fayia Sellu on his appointment to the office of Inspector General.

Jenkins Johnson Esq. further used the opportunity to hobnob with the general membership of the Executive Management Board inclusive of Regional Commanders in the Conference Room and via zoom respectively.

Mr. Jenkins Johnson gave a synopsis of the role and responsibility of the Office of the Ombudsman, as enshrined in Section 7 of the Ombudsman Act; noting, that the Ombudsman is the people’s spokesman. He revealed that many Police Officers had appealed through the Ombudsman’s Office on decisions that were taken against them in the SLP; but with the intervention of the Ombudsman, some of those issues were judiciously addressed.

However, the Ombudsman drew the attention of the Inspector General of Police and the Executive Management Board to issues of police bail, detention facilities at police stations and the relationship between the Police and the citizens. He emphasized that the IGP and the Executive Management Board need to smoothen the relationship between the citizens and thePolice. In his words, he said, “I believe in the leadership of IG Sellu and do not doubt that he can change the narrative for the betterment of the institution; as the Ombudsman is a policy assurance for all and sundry”. 

Responding, the Inspector General of Police – Mr. William Fayia Sellu thanked Jenkins Johnson Esq. and the team for such a maiden visit which culminated in a kind of worthwhile lecture delivered to the EMB members. He furthered that most of the issues highlighted were not new, though some, he said, will be used as management information for future planning.

As regards strengthening the relationship between the two institutions, the Director of Professional Standards – AIG K.S Kamara was considered to serve as a liaison for effective administration.

AIG Thomas M. Lahai, AIG Mohamed Braima-Jah, AIG Saidu B Jalloh and AIG Memunatu Konteh-Jallohalso made meaningful contributions to some of the issues expressed by the Ombudsman and team. There is no denying the fact that there are lots of oversight bodies that regulate the Police; but disappointingly, most of these bodies always indict the SLP instead of condemning any wrongdoing meted out against the Police by some members of the public.

Regional Police  Commanders in the provinces also made similar contributions concerning some of the complaints made to the Ombudsman Office, such as unfair treatment based on the fact that the Office does not fully understand some of the constraints the institution faces while executing its duties.

Meanwhile, the Inspector General of Police reassured the Ombudsman and team of his maximum support at all times and expressed the hope that there would be follow-up meetings for better collaboration.

Group photos and other pleasantries climaxed the session.

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CHILDREN OF ON-THE-RUN COUPLE CONTINUE TO LANGUISH

By Ibrahim Sangha

Hajaratu Mansaray
Yemeh Mansaray

Almost seven weeks had passed since the neighborhood of 63 Palmer Street, Wellington, Freetown Sierra Leone noticed that MrYemeh Mansaray and his spouse Hajiratu Mansaray fled out of their home soon as they noticed that their names were mentioned in the list of persons of interest who were declared wanted for allegedly organizing, sponsoring and participating in the August 8th 9th and 10th insurrection this year.

10th August 2022 has forever gone down in the anal history of Sierra Leone as three-days of protest, stagedby some aggrieved members of the public, resulted in the killing of six (6) police personnel, twenty-nine (29) civilians, as well as the burning and destruction of state and private citizen’s properties that worth billions of Leones. According to the President of Sierra Leone, the perpetrators whom he described as Insurrectionists are members of the opposition.

Fatmata Mansaray who is 16 years old is the eldest of the three children, Hassan Mansaray 12 and KadiatuMansaray 10 years old, of Yemen and HajiratuMansaray. According to Fatmata Mansaray, herparents’ plight started two years back when some members of her dad’s tribe men called her dad (Yemen Mansaray) to take over the mantle of leadership of their traditional secret society and to be initiated and ensure to initiate all of his children into the secret society. “Our kinsmen offered my father the leadership position of our traditional secret society but he refused to accept it. They started chasing and urging him to go to the village to take over the society but he always told them that his religion does not permit him to takepart in any secret society, therefore, he was not interested. As a result of the disturbance of overzealous traditionalists, we relocated to Waterloo”, FatmataMansaray explained.

Adding to their pain, she said that members of the secret society started to publicize her father and mother, Mr and Mrs Mansaray as strong sponsors of the main opposition political party – the All People’s Congress (APC). She called off her statement that she was among those who sat the West African Senior Secondary School Examination (WASSCE) 2021/2022 academic year and she got university requirements but the absence of her parents, who could settle heruniversity bill, has made her stay at home doing nothing.

Abubakarr Sesay, the chief imam of the Wellington community was a close friend of Yemen Mansaray whousually led him and others in Islamic prayers in their community mosque. Imam Sesay affirmed knowing the couple for a while. He then intimated to this medium that Mr Mansaray several times informed the congregation (Jama’at) that he wanted to move to an unknown location due to the traditional initiators’ pressure on him which he could no longer withstand. “After many months of disappearance, I saw their names and pictures on the wanted list on social media as members of those who sponsored and participated in the August 10th violent protest that took the lives of Sierra Leoneans – 6 police officers and 29 civilians,” Imam Abubakar Sesay said,

According to the record of the head of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Sierra Leone Police force, chief superintendent Richard Robert said that both people are not in the detainee’s record. He however confirmed that they are indeed among the persons of interest for the allegation of public disorder, perpetration of violence against the state, terrorist act of insurrection and attempted coup d’etat among other criminal offences.

The couple were surprised to see their names and photos on social media as wanted by the Sierra Leonean Police and according to them they’re peace-loving citizens and that is what they instill in their children and those who come around them. 

It could be evident that the photo of Oladapo OlaitanOlaonipekun alias Dagrin, a Nigerian rapper born in Ogun, Nigeria and died in April 2010 was captured by the Sierra Leone Police as one of the wanted persons for the August 10 “INSURRECTION” as it was termedby President of Sierra Leone, His Excellency Dr Julius Maada Bio in his State Speech to the citizens of Sierra Leone. He said the Insurrectionists wanted to remove him from governance, which is unbelievable because the Soldiers are right at State House, a civilian with a bare hand cannot remove a democratically elected president without the aid of the military.

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