The Commissioner for the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Francis Ben Kaifala has explained his experience with president Julius Maada Bio before his appointment in 2018.

President Bio appointed him as ACC commissioner after he took over power in 2018 to fight against corruption in the Sierra Leone. Throughout this period the ACC has prosecuted several individuals for corruption related offences and has recovered billions of Leones in the process.

Commissioner Kaifala therefore explained his journey as ACC commissioner during President Bio’s first term in office.

See details below:

“5 years ago, I sat with President Bio in a small room at his residence then at Juba, and we were having a deep conversation about the COST OF CORRUPTION ON SIERRA LEONE, the need to LAUNDER THE IMAGE OF THE COUNTRY URGENTLY and me LEADING and ENGINEERING a fight against corruption that should change the course of history of Sierra Leone FOREVER. I had then just returned from studies in the US as a Fulbright Scholar and we agreed one thing – We have to make corruption UNFASHIONABLE in Sierra Leone. 

At the end of that session, he looked at me and said words I will never forget. . . 

“Your reputation at your age is impeccable. You come highly recommended by everyone. knowing you myself, I have immense confidence in you. That is why the lot has fallen on you to take up this challenge to lead the fight against corruption in my government. You have a long way to go; I have shortened it for you. If anyone stands in your way, take him out.” 

I sat there looking at him in amazement as he said all the right things that the young lawyer and activist I was wanted to hear on Sierra Leone before being appointed Anti-corruption Commissioner. We discussed Lin Kwan Yiu and his Singapore model. We agreed one thing, only us can build Sierra Leone to gain respectability again. We needed to take our country’s destiny more seriously.

5 years later amidst all challenges, we have indeed made corruption unfashionable, laundered the image of Sierra Leone to gain respectability in the Community of nations, in global indexes from Transparency International to afrobarometer, Sierra Leone has now occupied more respectable positions, we are attracting other countries from across Africa to learn from our result-oriented and impactful MODEL of the fight against corruption. . .

And here, I am, standing, 5 years later, side-by side my President as we opened the State-of-the art PURPOSE-SPECIFIC Edifice built to house the HEADQUARTERS of the Anti-Corruption Commission – the institution he sent me to lead – as a PERMANENT SYMBOL of our collective resolve against corruption.

We have been winning together. . .but it is because we are winning that we will keep fighting like we are losing; because Sierra Leone needs US!”