Sierra Leone charges tax boss

2010-10-27 19:03

Freetown - Sierra Leone's anti-graft agency has indicted the country's tax chief, his wife and three others on corruption charges, the body said in a statement Wednesday.

Allieu Sesay, commissioner-general of the state revenue collection body and the others - who were described as contractors to the National Revenue Authority - were charged with 57 counts of graft, said the Anti-Corruption Commission.

Alleged offences included failing to comply with procurement procedures, conspiracy to commit corruption offences and abuse of office, it said.

Sesay has been suspended for 16 months as the ACC carried out its probe.

The five are accused of creating fictitious companies and bids to carry out a tender to refurbish the NRA's customs department, funded by a British Department for International Development (Dfid) grant of €650,000.

The suspects have been released on bail and are due to appear in court in November.

The AAC separately charged the bursar of a provincial Muslim Brotherhood Secondary School on 65 counts related to the misappropriation of an unspecified amount of public funds.

The west African nation is one of the world's poorest countries and corruption is one of its main challenges as it rebuilds eight years after the end of a decade-long civil war that claimed some 120 000 lives.