The Commissioner of the Anti-Corruption Commission, Francis Ben Kaifala has reacted with strong defense against the claims of the Popular Researcher, Dr John Idriss Elba over the issue of the African Graduate University.

Commissioner Francis Ben Kaifala gives reasons why he chose not to arrest IGP Sovula as he commented on Dr Idriss’s Post on facebook,which claims that he neglected the issue of the issue of the fake University when it is was brought to his attention. Below is the Commissioner’s comment.

“John brought this issue to my attention and asked us to arrest the IG and everyone who he thinks and alleges (according to him) are parading PhD’s unmerrited. I told him that if the alleged PHD was not what was used to get the job otherwise known as “advantage” then it is not material to us. Anyone can claim any title but to qualify for an “advantage” it has to be material to gaining employment in the public service. So if the requirement for a job is that you should have “undergraduate Degree” or “be a lawyer” and it turns out that you took the job and you neither have an undergraduate degree or are not a lawyer as the case may be, then it would be of interest to us. Otherwise it will not be of interest to us because the “advantage” requirement would be missing. I even went further to explain to him that it is more an administrative issue than criminality when it is not deemed material.

Is there any requirement for PHD to be Inspector General of Police or any of the jobs concerned? Was it what was used to get the job? Is it material to the person getting the job? Can it qualify as corruption? Would it not need further probing.

The second aspect I explained to John was that a purported holder of a degree may himself be scammed. That makes him or her a victim. So if I went to Queen Mary University and Queen Mary confers me with a degree when they are not accredited in UK, I may have been careless or failed to do due diligence but will it be criminal for me to hold out that degree prior to knowing the entreprise? Would the real criminals not be the ones running the scam. Should the purported students be cloaked with Corruption Criminality immediately without more?

Is this not an issue for the Tertiary Education Commission, HRMO and other institutions where to us the advantage or materiality requirement have not yet been established. What about private individuals, do we even have jurisdiction over them as ACC? To us it is in fact an issue of fraud outside our mandate. The police who have responsibility have arrested those involved. We will provide support to the police.

But John wanted us to do his own personal crusade because to him, because he has PhD, and merited it, anyone else claiming it and there are questions, it is personal crusade and an insult to him. PhD is a Lord Superior title and John is the social guardian of its use in Sierra Leone. We must arrest the IG and all who he questions. So we can’t control John’s understanding or his attempt to smear me and the ACC in the process. It comes with the territory we find ourselves. Anyone can write anything on social media.

We are a professional national body with a responsibility that requires the best of professionalism and balance and we cannot do anyone’s personal bidding. We do our job while opening oursves to information. But we also process the information and determine what satisfies the requirement of “corruption” particularly the key requirement of “conferring an advantage”. In this case, the issue remains kept in view (KIV).

We will keep doing our job.

On the personal attacks from him against me for merely doing my job and being professional, he himself has said it: Insulting me while I remained calm and brandishing on social media that he in fact insulted me like I am his urchin while proudly calling me “a brother” at the same time goes more to his character than mine. I accept the insults; it comes with the territory. I also have learnt to reserve my battles for another day or leave them entirely to proverbially suffer fools gladly.

I wish him good luck”