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Sierra Leone: Corruption and anti-corruption

Corruption in Sierra Leone remains a pervasive challenge. Since the end of the civil war in 2002, successive governments have made efforts to tackle corruption and hold perpetrators, especially those from the previous government, accountable, but challenges remain. Anti-corruption efforts have focused on amending laws, institutional frameworks and the establishment of a special anti-corruption judicial division but concerns about the backsliding of democracy in the country, weak checks on the power of the executive and the politicisation of the anti-corruption cause make it difficult to counter corruption effectively.

31 August 2023
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Sierra Leone: Corruption and anti-corruption

Main points

  • Corruption remains a pervasive challenge in Sierra Leone and available indicators show an inconclusive picture of the progress made in controlling corruption.
  • The government has taken important steps to improve anti-corruption legislation, but a lot more remains to be done in terms of enforcement, transparency and access to information.
  • Corruption in the health and education sectors, as well as in the police, are of particular concern.
  • The government seems to have handled the COVID-19 pandemic better than the Ebola outbreak a few years before, but few people benefitted from the government’s relief programme and most people think the funds were unfairly allocated.
  • Recent events have given rise to concerns that one of the main anti-corruption players in the country, the Anti-Corruption Commission, might be exclusively targeting actors outside of the ruling party.

Cite this publication

Sotola, D.; Kukutschka, R.; (2023) Sierra Leone: Corruption and anti-corruption. Bergen: U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute (U4 Helpdesk Answer 2023:35)

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David Olusegun Sotola
Roberto Martinez B. Kukutschka


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