5 June 2018

Sierra Leone: Parliament Screens New SLBC DG, Ten Others

Members of the Appointment and Public Service Commission yesterday screened the newly appointed Director General of the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), Joseph S. Kapuwa, and ten other presidential nominees to serve in various ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs).

Chairman of the Committee and Leader of Government Business, Hon. Sidie Mohamed Tunis, assured members and the audience at the interview session that all the nominees are technocrats in their respective disciplines and that he believes they would perform as expected.

He added that if committee members or any member of the public was not satisfied with any of the nominees and provide evidence, the latter would not be interviewed.

In relation to the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation being branded as a political institution, Joseph Kapuwa said the corporation needs effective and efficient leadership.

He said where there is effective leadership there wouldn't be claims of politicising the public broadcaster.

"If given the opportunity, I will make sure that effective and efficient leadership is restored at the SLBC as it is highly needed as a national broadcaster. As a pure and applied broadcaster myself, I will make sure that all the voices of the public are actually represented," he said.

Kapuwa, who is also a respected member of the Sierra Leonean Bar, assured the committee that if given the opportunity he would ensure all voices will have their say, adding that a national broadcaster should represent public issues and that of national interest.

Also, Ibrahim Brima Swaray, the nominee Chief Executive Officer of the National Public Procurement Authority (NPPA), told members that the roles and responsibilities of the chief executive are to regulate and harmonise procurement activities, ensure that fair games are played and advise government on procurement issues.

"I will make sure that vault controllers will not determine how procurement officers should work when procurement processes are undertaken. With the help of Parliament, I hope I will succeed. I will also make sure that the authority will lessen the work of the Audit Service Sierra Leone on procurement defaulters. I will make sure that MDAs do not sign contracts that are way above the prices in the threshold and also ensure that suppliers' prices will not go beyond 25 or 50 percent of the threshold," he promised.

Mr. Swaray, a procurement specialist, maintained that if the NPPA was working very well, the work of ACC would not be needed in the country.

Proposed Commissioner-General of the National Revenue Authority, Dr. Samuel S. Jibao, said that over the years revenue has been rumbling around 10.9% and that he would ensure that figures increase from 3.4 trillion to 9 trillion in the next five years.

"When I assume office, my focus will be on the personnel and the system in the authority. On the personnel, I will have to let them know that revenue administration is a career as that is what is missing. It is not about making individual money. The mindset of personnel will be strengthened by mentorship, training, exposure and above all is discipline," he noted.

The following nominees were also interviewed: Prince Alex Harding - proposed Chairman National Telecommunication(NATCOM), Andrew Jaia Kaikai - proposed Chief Immigration Officer, Umaru N. Koroma Esq - proposed Chairman National Commission for Privatization(NCP), Dr. Foday Moriba Jaward - proposed Executive Director - Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Mohamed Haji-Kella - Deputy Minister Social Welfare, Gender and Children's Affairs, Mohamed Fuad Daboh - proposed Director General National Social Security and Insurance Trust (NASSIT) and Brig. General (Rtd.) John A.O. Jah-Tucker - proposed National Security Coordinator, Office of National Security (ONS).

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