Calling for the sacking of the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the National Revenue Authority (NRA), Dr. Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara, by certain individuals has not only been deemed as disingenuous and a disservice to this nation but rather a well calculated ploy to continue the marginalization of prominent women of high integrity and impeccable reputation, occupying sensitive and important public offices, just because they are firmly upholding the truth and more so for their uncompromising stance on certain critical State matters bordering on exposing corruption and bad governance.

Maybe, just because of exposing corrupt practices in public offices and elsewhere, as no plausible reason had been given, the Auditor General of Audit Service Sierra Leone, Lara Taylor- Pearce was suspended pending trial by a Tribunal. For seemingly not supportive of certain financial policies adopted by the Government generally, the former Deputy Minister of Finance 11, Dr Patricia Laverley, had no alternative but to resign her position bordering on individual principle.

And now there is this hue and cry by certain sections of the Media and Social Media handlers, who could not be au fait with the situation at hand, for the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the National Revenue Authority (NRA), Dr .Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara, to be shown the exit door predicating their arguments on insubordination and her reluctance to do what she deems right and as a matter of fact a best practice.

It will indeed baffle many to learn that Dr .Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara’s exit-door or crucifixion campaign emanated from her simply inviting certain big business entities to appear before an Investigative Panel that has been established, spearheaded by her, to elucidate on certain issues related to their tax compliance with the Authority.

Her fine initiative of probing certain well established business entities in the country vis-à-vis their tax compliance portfolio seemed to have been her biggest transgression which did not go down well with certain individuals chief among them, the current Minister of Finance, Denis Vandi.

Infuriated by the Chairperson’s initiative, the Minister of Finance, Denis Vandi, wasted no time but to swiftly react: “We have no doubt that such action by the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the NRA will result in an unhealthy business environment, impacting on the financial and economic governance of the State.”

He then went on to again state that: “In view of the foregoing, I hereby direct that all the invitations sent for the said investigation to the concerned businesses be rescinded with immediate effect.”

Although it is clearly spelt out in Section 16 of the NRA Act that in the exercise of its functions, the independence of Authority (NRA) shall not be subject to the direction or control of any persona of authority or authority, it is vividly apparent that the Minister of Finance seemingly thinks he is so powerful to such an extent that he can float or disregard a statutory provision with reckless abandon and just act according to his whims and caprices.

As argued by a school of thought, this latest alarming and suspicious move by the Finance Minister smacks of, him, having skeletons in his closet. They maintain that it is unfathomable for a Finance Minister to restrain someone who is trying to fight corruption out of patriotism.

They averred that the action or response of the Finance Minister could only be interpreted along the line that he is frantically trying to protect certain business entities, in which he has vested interest, that were invited by the NRA Board Chair to answer to certain questions.

According to them, if the Finance Minister has no ulterior motive why should he prevent the Board Chair from going on with her investigation?

How does the Board Chair of the NRA initiative results to an unhealthy business environment, impacting on the financial and economic governance of the State as stated by the Finance Minister?

As one of the flagship programmes of the current SLPP-led administration is fighting corruption, using different approaches must be embraced by all. This is so because it is only when we stem the accelerated pace of corruption in this country, by using various approaches, that all development programmes that are being rolled out by the current Government will have significant positive impact on the lives of majority of Sierra Leoneans. They concluded that at the end of the day what really matters is for the NRA to mobilize as much revenue as possible in order to meet the specified target or ceiling set up by the Government.

When this medium went out and sounded the views of many on this issue the responses were overwhelmingly against the action taken by the Minister of Finance. Majority of them expressed the view that the Board Members of the NRA must tenaciously go on with the probing exercise and must not be deterred in any form in the exercise of their statutory obligation by the Minister of Finance as the initiative is well in place and tends to yield fruitful dividends for the State.

They also categorically stated that if anybody has evidence that the action taken by the NRA Board Chair is as a result of her been bribed to do so then this medium will join other well meaning Sierra Leoneans for those making such an accusation to come up with the evidence to substantiate their claim otherwise it will remain a baseless accusation. The production of evidence is important because this claim of her being bribed to do certain uncanny things has been in the public domain as reported by some tabloids without any justification or proof.

“This country has become one where any upright person who exposes corruption or who is on the verge of doing so is being targeted more especially if such a person is a female,” an Abacha Street trader lamented furthering how such an unhealthy practice must be discouraged as it is completely unfair and is against national development as well as totally not in tune with the voices of change vehemently calling for enhanced women empowerment that has gained nationwide momentum.

In as much as there must be a symbiotic relation between supervising Ministries and their Agencies in the interest of national development the present cold war between the Minister of Finance, Denis Vandi and the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the National Revenue Authority (NRA), Dr .Tuma Adama Gento-Kamara is one that should be amicably resolved by the Chief Executive Officer or any high ranking political functionary.

But as the situation now stands any attempt to remove her from her current position or killing her well acclaimed initiative will not only go down well with many, especially feminine groups in this country but will be very inimical and detrimental to the reputation of the political class and above all help in discouraging women from accepting certain public appointment or making meaningful contributions to overall national development.