A few weeks ago, Government of Sierra Leone signed a contract with ARISE IIP to manage and develop the Pepel Railway and Port, which is the gateway for mining export in Sierra Leone. But the company is nothing to write home about.

ARISE Group is allegedly made up of entities ARISE Port and Logistics, ARISE Integrated Industrial Platforms & ARISE Infrastructure Services.

A closer look at these entities shows that the first company ARISE Port & Logistics is the entity that owns and operates ports and infrastructure in other African countries (Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, Benin, Gabon, and Chad) dating back to 2017. One can see from the shareholding that ARISE Port & Logistics are owned by AP Moller (42.28%), Olam (32.41%) and AFC (25.31%).

However, if you take a look a look at ARISE Integrated Industrial Platform, which signed the contract with Government of Sierra Leone, all they have are agreements creating non-economic zone agreements in these countries which were purportedly executed only very recently at the end of 2022 (just a few months ago!). This entity has No Assets, No Projects, No Portfolio and Nothing To Show AT ALL!, except a bunch of Smoke & Mirrors.

To add insult to injury, only the minority shareholder in ARISE Port and Logistics, AFC, is a shareholder in ARISE IIP. However, in ARISE IIP, AFC which is linked to Frank Timis, is the majority shareholder, along with a newly established fund called ATIF who have zero experience in ports and related logistics.

This is who the Government of Sierra Leone has signed over the management of our Pepel Port and Railway to — a company with no experience and no projects! They will destroy our mining sector.