An independent institution established for the prevention, investigation, prosecution and punishment of corruption, corrupt practices and to provide for other related matters. 

Contact us on: +23278832131 or info@anticorruption.gov.sl
Address:  Integrity House, Tower Hill, Freetown Sierra Leone, West Africa.





1. Thank you Mr. Chair for the opportunity you have accorded me and the Secretariat to address this august assembly on Sierra Leone’s continued resolve and determination to the implementation of the provisions in the Convention relating to; International Cooperation, Asset Recovery, Prevention and Technical Assistance, and wish to express satisfaction and optimism that the level of achievement so far is encouraging and believe that, there is need for our respective countries to do more in ensuring full compliance to the recommendations of the Convention.


2. Mr. Chair, also permit me to Congratulate you, the Secretariat and ALL State Parties on the Twentieth (20th) Anniversary of UNCAC which we in Sierra Leone hold so dearly as was manifested in our International Anti-Corruption Day celebrations on December 8, with a Health Walk-on the global theme; “Uniting the World against corruption”, localized to ‘Walking against corruption for a better Sierra Leone’.



3. Mr. Chairman, I am pleased to state that Sierra Leone is among the first few countries that signed to the UN Convention on the 9th December 2003 and ratified same on October 30, 2004. We also adopted the ECOWAS Protocol and acceded to the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC). Sierra Leone has made tremendous efforts in the domestication of the UNCAC and AUCPCC thereby strengthening and consolidating the fight in the country with mind-blowing results and outcomes.


4. I would like to further emphasize the need for preventive measures because of the known fact that it is far cheaper and sustainable to prevent corruption than to prosecute or even recover stolen wealth. It is often said that, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Therefore, it is important to state that, in Sierra Leone, significant progress has been made in tackling corruption through our preventive strategy in line with Article Two of the Convention.



5. Significant to state also is the reforms we have made to our legal framework and the accompanying outstanding achievements. The Anti-Corruption Act of 2000 was repealed and replaced with the 2008 Act and further amended in 2019, which today, the Anti-Corruption Commission Sierra Leone is remarkable for having one of the strongest anti corruption Laws in the sub region. In fact, the Amendment in 2019 also ushered in many positive things in regard the fight against corruption. Crucial among them are; Mandatory Restitution, Increased penalty from 30 Million (Old) Leones or 3 years to 50 Million (Old) Leones or 5 years imprisonment, Administrative Sanctions for defaulters of Asset Declaration, Timeframe of three months for Entrance and Exit declaration, Academic malpractice as corruption offence, Non-conviction asset based recovery and trial in absentia.


6. Because of the prosecutorial powers conferred on the ACC, the establishment of the Special Anti-Corruption Division within the High Court of Sierra Leone, with modern facilities/equipment and dedicated Judges, the ACC-SL has in the past five years, under the astute Leadership of Francis Ben Kaifala Esq., supported by me his Deputy, and the unwavering Presidential Will from His Excellency the President, Brigadier (Rtd.) Dr. Julius Maada Bio, significant numbers of high profile convictions have been secured with an over 90 percent conviction rate of overall anti-corruption cases charged to Court.



7. Sierra Leone, through the ACC has undertaken reviews of the systems and procedures of public sector institutions that are considered as corruption high risk entities with a view to eliminating the inherent corruption vulnerabilities in the delivery of services. In that vein, the ACC developed a Corruption Risk Assessment tool called “systems and process review,” which it uses to examine practices and procedures in Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) to identify corruption risks and make remedial recommendations. . Sections 8 (1) & (2) of the 2008 Act as Amended in 2019, makes it compulsory and incumbent for MDAs reviewed to implement the recommendations within a certain timeframe of three months.  Therefore, the ACC-SL has as a preventive measure, reviewed practices and procedures of over Fourteen (14) MDAs, with the view to strengthening service delivery, integrity and accountability.


8. Moreover, Sierra Leone has experienced the successful implementation of the 4th Generation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy (2019-2023) with an average 90 percent compliance rate by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs). The Strategy contained 832 action points for implementation by both the Local Councils and MDAs. The Local Councils had 245 action points and successfully implemented 242, which gives a 99% compliance rate, while MDAs had 587 action points and successfully implemented 529, indicating a 90% compliance rate. With the National Anti-Corruption Strategy, the ACC has also introduced Integrity Pledges and Pacts aimed at promoting integrity, transparency and accountability in the award of contracts and other investments undertaken by Government.



9. Currently, Sierra Leone is at an advanced stage in the development of the 5th Generation National Anti-Corruption Strategy 2024-2028, which will outline the preventive measures to undertake to address the problem of corruption in Sierra Leone, in order to enhance service delivery and efficiency and the realization of the Big Five, which are the Game Changers for building an inclusive and prosperous Sierra Leone.


10. It is important to also note that Sierra Leone unlike many of our developing countries have expanded the ACC mandate to investigate and prosecute cases relating to illicit financial flows. This had posed a serious challenge in efforts to curb money laundering and illicit financial flows. The Anti-Money Laundering and Combating of Financing of Terrorism (Amendment) Act (No 3) of 2019, gives the ACC jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute related money laundering and financing of terrorism offences thereby, extending the prosecutorial mandate of the Commission. Consequently, the ACC launched investigations into cases that involved aspects of money laundering. 



11. Sierra Leone through the ACC has the advantage of enforcing extra-judicial powers such as out of court settlements-alternative to prosecution, which has largely revolutionized the fight against Corruption, and has brought so many gains to the fight. Since 2018, the ACC has RECOVERED over FORTY FIVE BILLION (Old) LEONES, approximately THREE MILLION UNITED STATES DOLLARS (USD$3M) as monies from the corrupt and paid same into the CONSOLIDATED REVENUE FUND (Government coffers) through the President of the Republic of Sierra Leone. Crucially also, the ACC has RECOVERED Two (2) Toyota Landcruiser Prado vehicles and a Two Storey Hotel Building in Koidu City, Eastern Sierra Leone which are properties acquired from corrupt proceeds-all of an estimated value of  TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND UNITED STATES DOLLARS ($USD 200,000). Additionally, the ACC has RECOVERED monies and same paid back to institutions such as, the National Revenue Authority (NRA), the Sierra Leone Road Safety Authority (SLRSA), the Sierra Leone Cable Network (SALCAB), Aberdeen Women’s Centre etc., as a mark of effective collaboration to protecting public revenue and resources. 


12. In the areas of Technical Assistance and International Cooperation, Sierra Leone has been quite remarkable. In April 2021, it played host to the Ag. Head of the Liberian Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC), Counselor Kanio Bai Gbala and his team and conversely in the same year in December, the Commissioner of the ACC-SL Francis Ben Kaifala Esq., paid working visit to the LACC in Monrovia, Liberia. The visits were to enable the two leaders share their perspectives and expertise of how the fight against corruption would be further advanced and strengthened in the Sub-region. Remarkably also, in 2022, the Deputy Director, Corruption Prevention Department, ACC, Samuel Marah Esq. facilitated a week-long capacity building training to the LACC Team in Liberia on prevention measures and how these could be mainstreamed into MDAs for improved service delivery outcomes. Similarly, the ACC-SL has provided and continues to provide technical support to Anti-Corruption agencies in sister countries such as, Guinea, Conakry and Banjul-the Gambia. The Republic of Uganda in 2019 also embarked on a study tour to Sierra Leone, where they were provided technical support on Assets Declaration processes which the ACC-SL is outstanding for. 


13. Mr. Chair, it is as a result of these many gains recorded in the fight against corruption, and the meticulous compliance to the provisions of the UNCAC, that Sierra Leone is rated and ranked so favorably in National and International Corruption Perception Indices.  


14. In the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) scorecard, for instance, the country has consistently recorded outstanding scores in the mandatory ‘Control of Corruption’ Indicator; 71 percent in 2018, excellent scores recorded in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 76 percent recorded in the recently released 2023 Scorecard.  


15. Similarly, other independent local and international institutions continue to rate Sierra Leone ahead of most of our counterpart countries in the sub-region and the African continent at large. Sierra Leone has moved 20 places upwards on the Global Corruption Perception Index (CPI) published by Transparency International in January, 2023, from 130 in 2017 to 110 in 2022, out of 180 countries surveyed with a current score of 34, above the Sub-Saharan average, and the highest the country has ever recorded, since the CPI rankings began. 



16. In 2020, in partnership with Department For International Development, now Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), the Public Financial Management Consortium (PFM) led by Center for Accountability and the Rule of Law (CARL), and also comprising, Restless Development, Budget Advocacy Network, and Christian Aid, conducted a study on the perception of corruption in Sierra Leone, and over 92% of respondents said they are aware of the fight against corruption, and believed the ACC is the only institution they trust to fight corruption. 


17. Mr. Chair, I thank you once more for the valuable time provided me to give an account of Sierra Leone’s sterling efforts in the implementation of the provisions in the UNCAC as they relate to Prevention measures, International Cooperation, Technical Assistance and Assets Recovery.