National Disagreements: Wrestling with An Audit in the Midst of Ebola

Mohamed Gibril Sesay, one of Sierra Leone's leading social and political commentators, thinks the recent Report on the Audit of the Management of Ebola Funds has initiated one of the most animated discussions ever in Sierra Leone. 

The Auditor General has initiated one of the most animated discussions ever in Sierra Leone about what the Constitution says about relationships between some agencies, and also forced many persons and institutions to give public account of their use of funds -- in the process educating many about per diems, banking procedures, receipts, etc.

It is also entrenching the people's right to discuss.

Some of these discussions have been instructive and constructive, showing concern for accountability.

Some have been by people who feel rightfully wronged by perceptions created by the reports about them, and have given public rebuttals.

There are those who are using these rebuttals to discredit the totality of the report; and there are those who care not about accountability, but are using the report to score political points.

There are those who resist the political point scoring; and those who believe the report is such a sacred infallible text that any criticism of it is sacrilegious.

There are those, on all sides of these debates, who display cognitive and deliberative competence.

And some who lack these prime civic virtues of public and democratic debate; those whose utter maliciousness or discursive arrogance, or self-appointment as people's advocate or nether political ambitions drive them unto pathetic gaffes on social media, radio, and other places.

But let us also acknowledge that what we are participating in is pivotal, and shows an environment of increased transparency, voice accountability and public spiritedness, and bravo to all those, within and outside government, and all the places between these two, who are making this possible.

Mohamed Gibril Sesay currently teaches at Fourah Bay College. He has also served as a consultant with the nation's Truth and Reconciliation Commission and in development roles on behalf of the government of Sierra Leone. 


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