The tour was held in a bid to clarify the ongoing rumor that Senior Military Officers have squandered leave allowances that was meant for LEOBATT ONE peace keepers who fought in Sudan and Somalia respectively.
That was the quarter guard salute by Military officers in the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces in respect to the arrival of the Chief of Defense Staff, Samuel Omar Williams on his visit to Makeni and Bo in the North and Southern provinces of Sierra Leone.
The tour was well witnessed by top military officials ranging from Colonel, Major, Captain and other lower ranks dominating the ceremony.
A similar ceremony was also conducted at hockey pitch on Wilberforce in Freetown.
According to the Chief of Defense Staff, Lnt. General Samuel Omar Williams, the rumors making the rounds first came up in September of this year, whilst he was on a meeting with President Koroma in New York where he pledges for a battalion on United Nations Peace keeping.
‘I had long told soldiers who formed part of that contingent not to give any credence to that allegation, he said, while noting that such an allegation undermines equity and trust on the activities of any sober minded institution, adding that moral is greater than any other thing in the military’.
Not long after, he said the same issue came up in November and therefore has decided to launch a formal investigation on a two way approach. ‘We have engaged the Director General at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Corporation who was the vote controller of the finances or payment concerning peace keepers, Union Trust Bank who had also gave them a comprehensive statement of account, and solicit the key support operations that Included the United Nations and the African Union to know whether they in any way have knowledge of the said issue.
He reiterated that before any of the troops departed for a peace keeping mission, they had always subscribe to a memorandum of understanding that set out the terms and conditions under which the contingent would serve, and also the earning, duration and the nature of the operation itself among others.
He said during their mission they were being given $1.3 on a daily basis irrespective of the two missions, while stating that for United Nations peace keepers died and their benefit was $70,000 while the African Union is $50,000, with disability benefit for which he said are specifically for those who were injured and incapacitated. He cautioned them the UN peace keepers always bags home a bumper sum compared to the AU peace keepers.
Several questions were entertained from Officers who formed part of the contingent to the LEOBATT ONE AMISOM to Sudan and Somalia and Warrant Officer class 2 Fofanah 181695588 calling on colleagues to believe in their authorities, while cautioning that the military needs to equipped itself to match with other forces around the world.
In responding, the Chief of Defense Staff, Lieutenant General Samuel Omar Williams said the legal sector is presently looking on changing those laws and stating that they are not receiving funds compared to other forces in the country, and that they only acquire funds from the government and that they manage wisely, and however makes specific references to the rapid ongoing construction work at various military base across the country which he said is something that is worth applauding for.
With such an issue being a topic of discussion in the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces, it is however anticipated that it would be resolved amicably.