From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Wealth Builders’ Customers Angry with Gov’t
By Aruna Turay
Sep 8, 2010, 17:08

Scores of Sierra Leoneans and foreign nationals who have been doing business with the disbanded Wealth Builders Network may likely go on the rampage if the Government fails to urgently bridge them with Management with a view to addressing their plight.

On Tuesday 7th September 2010, a group of frustrated clientele led by one Moses Thoronka, a student of the University of Sierra Leone stormed the Awareness Times office to vent out their grievances for the attention of government who they apparently accuse for making a cover for Wealth Builders that has defrauded them of millions of Leones in savings.

Moses Thoronka who, like all others is desperate to retrieve his money in his case to meet college tuition informed that they had been doing business with Wealth Builders Network for several months before the Central Bank notification of not having granted Wealth Builders license to operate as a financial institution in this country.

“We had been remitting and withdrawing monies from Wealth Builders without being faced with problems,” the representative said, adding that they are suspicious that some government functionaries are making a cover up for the Managing Director to fleece them of their bona fide savings.

“We were taken aback to have heard from one Minister that the Managing Director has gone out of this country when we have proofs that he is still in Sierra Leon after a brief spell in detention,’’ he furthered. He said if anything, they expected the government to protect them because the APC promised to bring investors so they must have known the type of investors they brought into this country.

“We voted for the APC on the promise that they would bring in investors so we expect all such investors to be honest, otherwise it is the government that is dishonest to Sierra Leoneans,” he charged, adding that before the mediators who brought Wealth Builders from Nigeria could sell them to the public to operate, they should have ensured that all paper works were correct.

They therefore alleged that since government operatives behind Wealth Builders are suspected to have concealed the truth, government should be held responsible for the discrepancies. “As far as we are concerned we trusted the network and had no doubt in its operations and they used to perform well,” Thoronka proffered. He however said that it came as surprise to them when the Government issued a press release informing customers of the freezing of Wealth Builders’ accounts without any recourse for customers.

The desperate group of young men vowed to go on the rampage in the not too distant future if Government fails to adequately address their concerns. They said if government has truly frozen Wealth Builders’ accounts, they need to protect customers by refunding at least their capitals invested. 

“We have all relevant documents to show that the network is a recognized and registered institution with the Government of Sierra Leone. They even celebrated their anniversary in grand style sometime back so if they were working illegally according to central bank, then some people within this Government know the truth and want to make a cover up for their fake investor aimed at duping us customers,” Thoronka stated.

They used this forum to call on President Koroma to set up a commission to investigate and settle what they called a dangerous situation.  They informed that they will be convening a meeting today to reach a final decision on the matter to be followed by a big demonstration.

© Copyright 2005, Freetown, Sierra Leone.