Africa

Africanist Press: Two Decades Promoting Democracy and Resisting Corruption in Africa

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah This year – 2022 – marks 20 years since the launch of the Africanist Press as an independent media organization providing a platform for free speech, democracy, and accountable leadership in Africa. Africanist Press journalists have campaigned against corruption and graft across three successive regimes in Sierra Leone. As editor, …

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Hired Surveillance: Sierra Leone officials pay cyber intel groups to target journalists, political opponents

By Matthew Anderson, Nik Harris, and Mark Feldman An investigation by Africanist Press has uncovered that Sierra Leonean officials paid at least US$5 million to cyber intelligence groups, including the Israeli-based Cognyte Technologies Limited for cyber intelligence services and tools that were mostly used to target political opponents of the Maada Bio administration. Africanist Press …

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Sierra Leone: President’s diplomats unable to account for over US$4.6 million transferred in 2019 to New York for Chancery Building construction

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman In this report, Africanist Press provided transaction details from bank statements of Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs showing how funds transferred to New York for the alleged construction work at the Sierra Leone Mission Headquarters at the United Nations were squandered between 2018 and …

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Sierra Leone: Delays in Chancery Building trial may affect democratic competition in next year’s elections

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman About a dozen Sierra Leonean officials are due to arrive in New York early next week to inspect the Chancery Building of the Sierra Leone Mission. The building previously served as the headquarters of Sierra Leonean diplomats assigned to the United Nations in New York. …

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Sierra Leone: Electoral Commission inflated Election Procurement Contract by US$6.3 Million

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman In the last two reports, Africanist Press published documentary evidence showing that the Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL) awarded two procurement contracts worth over US$10 million to two Freetown companies that did not show technical capacity to supply the requested voter registration technology and …

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Sierra Leone: Electoral Commission’s Effort to Cover-up US$10 Million Procurement Scandal

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman The Electoral Commission of Sierra Leone (ECSL) held a press conference on Monday 19th September 2022 in Freetown to provide updates on the voter registration exercise. The Commission also attempted to respond to the Africanist Press publication on ECSL’s US$10 million procurement scandal. The Africanist …

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Sierra Leone: Over US$500,000 Withdrawn for President Bio’s Expenses in New York

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Anne B. Wallis, and Matthew Anderson Details on bank transfers and withdrawal records from the President’s Office in Freetown show that over US$500, 000 was withdrawn from the Central Bank of Sierra Leone (BSL) to allegedly fund personal expenses of the country’s president, Julius Maada Bio, who is currently visiting …

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Sierra Leone: Equipment and software irregularities affect voter registration despite about US$10 million government procurement expenditures

By Chernoh Alpha M. Bah, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman  Sierra Leone’s national voter registration exercise for 2023 commenced on 3 September 2022, and was fraught with technical and bureaucratic challenges. Hundreds of videos and other evidence collected by Africanist Press show that thousands of potential voters who turned up at voter registration centers, mostly …

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Illegal Expenditures: First Lady’s Office paid over Le1.3 billion to private company for alleged fuel supplies

By Nik Harris, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman Transactions in bank statements from the Office of the First Lady provide comprehensive details on how more than Le1.3 billion was paid directly to a private company in Freetown for “fuel purchase.” The transactions violated Sierra Leone’s public finance laws and procurement regulations. The 17 payments were …

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Sierra Leone: New evidence shows government’s ongoing efforts to silence Africanist Press

By Anne Baber Wallis, Matthew Anderson, and Mark Feldman  Leaked documents from the Office of the Attorney General of Sierra Leone provide new evidence on joint efforts undertaken by leading government officials and opposition party politicians to prevent Africanist Press from publishing its investigative reports on corruption and constitutional abuse by officials in the Maada …

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