From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Acha Kamara Frowns at Bad Press
By Aruna Turay
Jun 30, 2010, 17:08

The Inspector General of the Sierra Leone Police, Brima Acha Kamara has on Tuesday 29th June 2010 condemned what he referred to as a misquoted and misleading a banner head line article that appeared in a local tabloid captioned, ‘Promotion causes Rancor and Dissatisfaction within Police Force… Acha lies to the Nation, - Wake up call for VP to take Action’.

Taking great exception to the said article, IG Acha Kamara expressed how he is being victimized by some papers operating in Sierra Leone following the recent promotion of over ninety Police Constables to the rank of Sergeants.

IG Kamara referred to the publication as totally misquoted for having stated that the criteria for the promotion were based on the fact that all personnel that had served that force for a minimum of ten years in force would be eligible for promotion. On the contrary the IG denied ever telling any pressman that only personnel who have served that force for a minimum of ten years would be eligible for promotion.

According to IG Acha Kamara, the personnel were promoted based on their qualifications and service records, coupled with recommendations by their superior bosses. He said in consideration of gender equality, 30% (thirty percents) of those promoted in the Western Area were female officers. The IG said the promotion which covered the whole country within all police Divisions, Units and Post has no political link as police personnel were recommended through an open and efficient manner organized by their bosses.

He went on to say that after the initial recommendation the IG, an examination was conducted for those recommended in order to test their knowledge on subjects like English Language, Mathematics and Writing Skills.

"Following the exams, successful personnel were invited for an interview before attaining promotions," he disclosed.

The present police promotion system has been generally described by many as the most open and participatory promotion process of our time, based on the fact that all commanders were involved in the promotion and recommendation processes of personnel under their commands. The process has also been described by numerous personnel from the law enforcement agency as transparent and democratic.

It could be recalled that just a few days ago, the same indicted tabloid had published a false report that former President was gravely ill in South Africa only for the report to subject the paper’s publisher and sole owner to be even more perceived strongly as the laughingstock he has become in the society. The owner of the newspaper recently misquoted and misinterpreted the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon; which caused the said article to be shamefully retracted with a messy outcome.

Other sources reaching this reporter reveal that the misleading article was written with the rancor that most of the police personnel serving as presidential guards who are also said to be very close allies of the writer were not promoted.

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