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‘War’ at Maritime Administration! Board tells Minister to hands off administration

By Abu Bakarr Kargbo

Ken Philip Sondai, Executive Director

 

Transport Minister, Kabineh Kallon, why?

 

Things are no longer at ease at the Sierra Leone Maritime Administration, where the Board of Directors and Administrative Staff have called on the powers that be to intervene immediately to prevent an unforeseen problem caused by what they referred to as intruders. It is now clear that some desperados are looking for ways and means to selfishly have their way through the Administration, which has the primary responsibility of registering ship and other vessels, the licensing and safety of maritime personnel and for the regulation and development generally of maritime, coastal and inland water transport and for other matters connected therewith.

The Minister of Transport and Aviation, Kabineh Kallon with some unknown officials in government stand accused of playing games that will see the Maritime Administration going down the drains under its current leadership. The Minister, who has revealed that his decision to suspend the current Executive Director, Ken Philip Sondai, is unchanged, has received heavy criticisms from the Board of Directors and Administrative Staff of the Administration that are advising him to ‘hands-off’ their affairs.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors, Alhaji Umaru Dumbuya stated categorically that the Minister does not have the mandate or legal authority to suspend any member in the SLMA Administration. “Whatever he wants from the administration he should contact the board and whatever decision he may require taking he should do so in concert with the Board of Directors, which is the governing body of the Administration that has control and supervision of the administration as provided in Section 4 (1) of the Maritime Administration Act of 2000.

“The powers of the board to hire and fire administrative staff have been usurped by some top officials that are working tirelessly to impose some incompetent staff within our institution,” a top manager remarked with the condition of being anonymous.

“The Administration may also, subject to such terms & conditions as the Board shall determine, appoint a Deputy Executive Director and such other officers and staff as it considers necessary for the effective performance of its functions under this Act,” Section 16 of the Act states. “The few existing vacancies to be filled in by persons with the requisite formal qualifications, working experience, knowledge, skills, and aptitude, are what the Minister and other top authorities are trying to illegally fill,” sources alleged and added that some of these authorities are undermining the legal functions of the Board of Directors by giving appointment letters to people who are not qualified for the positions they currently occupy. See more next edition.

 

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