From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
Thousands of Containers of Suspected Free Medical Drugs Arrested in Sierra Leone
By Aruna Turay
Jun 21, 2010, 14:38

Gallant Police personnel attached to the Goderich Police Station in Adonkia under the command of one of the patriotic and loyal Local Unit Commanders (LUC) in Sierra Leone, Superintendent Ibrahim Koroma (aka Sizeman) yesterday 20th June 2010 arrested a yellow painted mini bus fully loaded with thousands of containers of medicine all contained in a total of 101 (One Hundred and One) huge cartoons of assorted drugs including 51(fifty-one) cartoons of Septrin antibiotics, 47(forty-seven) cartoons Paracetamol, 1(one) cartoon Ferrous Sulphate Tablets, 1(one) cartoon Folic Acid and 1(one) cartoon Multi Vitamins. The drugs are suspected to be those meant for the free health care medical service for pregnant women, lactating mothers and under five children recently launched by H.E. the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma. The arrested cartoons of drugs are all boldly labelled as belonging to the Government of Sierra Leone.í

The 101 Cartoons of suspected Free Healthcare Drugs

In an exclusive interview with LUC Superintendent Ibrahim Koroma, he told the Awareness Times that in the early hours of Sunday 20th June 2010, he got a tip-off from an unknown caller who informed him that a yellow mini bus has departed the peninsular environs of Angola Town heading for Freetown with cartoons of drugs meant for the free medical care. Acting on the tip-off, LUC Koroma went on, he commanded his personnel to mount a checkpoint along the main street in front of the police station at Adonkia. This he said was quickly carried out by his men headed by one of his loyal and gallant Arrest Officers, Police Constable (PC) 11640 John T. Conteh.

At about 7:40am LUC Koroma furthered, the team saw the suspected van coming and wasted no time in stopping and arresting one Abdul Karim Sesay, the driver of the van with registration number ABY 907, the apprentice Musa Koroma, the van itself and also one Abubakarr Bah of Lumley Road in Freetown who was also in the van and who claimed ownership of the suspected drugs.

Arrest Officer Goderich Police Station Adonkia PC Conteh John .T. Posed with the Arrested Drugs for Awareness Times Last Evening

According to Superintendent Koroma, Abubakarr Bah was arrested on the grounds that he claimed ownership of the drugs and that he contracted the driver to use his van to transport the drugs on his behalf.

However, the LUC revealed that the matter is still under investigation and statements are still being collected from the three suspects. He went on that today Monday 21st June he will write a letter to the Pharmacy Board of Sierra Leone inviting them to verify the drugs and prove whether or not they are part of the free health care drugs.

Crime Officer Goderich Police Station Adonkia Sergeant Mohamed Kamara Posed with the Arrested Drugs Last Evening

He said at the end of the investigation, the team would determine whether itís a court matter or not. The Arrest Officer PC 11640 Conteh John T. told Awareness Times that when he intercepted the vehicle, Abubakarr Bah who claimed ownership of the drugs, pleaded for him to bribe his way out of the arrest with several millions of Leones but the patriotic PC Conteh explained that seeing the sincerity of President Koroma towards mothers and children and the repeated calls from Police Inspector-General Brima Acha Kamara for police officers to be patriotic, there was no way he would have accepted "even a billion leones as bribe" so he put up a stiff resistance and instead informed his boss LUC Koroma about the arrest immediately. He said the latter ordered him to detain the suspects together with the exhibits until his arrival. At this point, the PC went on, he arrested and detained the three suspects together with the exhibits and put them under police custody as ordered by his boss.

Arrested Mini Bus Loaded with suspected Free Health Care Drugs

Speaking to Awareness Times last evening, the Inspector General of Police, Brima Acha Kamara expressed pride in his officers at Adonkia under the leadership of Superintendent ĎSizemaní Koroma for working in line with the Presidentís vision for mothers and children.

Meanwhile, the acting Health Minister Mohamed Daudis Koroma has contacted Awareness Times late last evening to commend our journalists for our speedy coverage of the arrest.

An APC Youth Leader, Dauda Kallon in Constituency 93 where the drugs were intercepted

"I am on my way down to Freetown from doing some checks at hospitals up in the provinces and I have just been informed about the speedy coverage that your journalists gave to this issue. I am calling to commend you all at Awareness Times," Mohamed Koroma told this newspaper.

Awareness Times Journalist Aruna Turay poses near the drugs

Cotrimoxazole (Septrin)

Drugs for Opportunistic Infections (Antibiotics)

Folic Acid Label

Iron Tablets Labelling

Containers of Panadol (Paracetamol)

A Container of Multivitamins

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