Meet the press 022

Meet the press 011


The Ombudsman of the republic of Sierra Leone Leon Jenkins-Johnson Esq. has met with members of the fourth estate at a press conference held at his Office at 26 Charlotte Street to brief them on his plans for moving the office forward. The theme for the briefing was “Improving the delivery of services to enhance administrative justice and safeguard human rights.

Making a presentation, the Ombudsman Leon Jenkins-Johnston Esq. thanked His Excellency the President Julius Maada Bio, for the confidence reposed in him to serve as Ombudsman of the Republic of Sierra Leone. He noted that with the confidence of the President he is ready to serve this nation without fear of favor.

He revealed that according to the Ombudsman’s Act 1997 mal-administration includes, bias, unfair discrimination or failure to explain grounds of decision which appears discriminatory. He maintained that section 20 of section 146 of the constitution provides that the functions of the Ombudsman shall include investigation of any action taken or omitted to be taken by or on behalf of:   

        a.     Any department of Ministry of Government

        b.     Any statutory corporation or institutions of higher learning set up entirely by public funds

        c.     Any member of the public.

Giving an update on his accomplishment Ombudsman Leon Jenkins-Johnston said that since he assumed office, he has conducted a regional familiarization tour in the four regions to engage stakeholders and staff to develop an agenda to continuously improve on the services rendered to the public. He said that his programmes are geared towards the issues within the purview of the Ombudsman. These key issues he revealed includes but not limited to:

         a.      Effective Prison/Correctional Service monitoring

         b.      Unlawful Arrest and Detention of persons

         c.      Improving Grievance Mechanism

         d.     Introduction of subpoena to enhance compliance in accordance with section 10(4) of the                                                       Ombudsman’s Act which makes the following provisions:” The Ombudsman shall have such powers,                                    rights and privileges as vested with the High Court of justice or a judge “

          e.     Protection of Vulnerable students at institutions of Higher Learning in Sierra Leone.

Speaking on Complaints received, resolves and transferred by the office of the Ombudsman, Ombudsman Leon Jenkins-Johnston stated that the office received 519 complaints in 2018 of which 253 were resolved, 126 referred and 40 under investigations.

He noted that the highest complaints were received in Freetown with 264, Bo with 111 Makeni with 52 Kenema with 47 and Port Loko with 45. He noted that the nature of complaints that the office has dealt with ranges from:

        a.     Non-payment of Salaries/ Arrears and Benefits

        b.     Non or late payment of gratuities/ pension from NASSIT

        c.     Wrongful dismissal

        d.     Bias / unfair treatment

        e.     Harassment and other issues relating to mal-administration.

He revealed the he will be visiting various ministries department and agencies especially the ministry of Lands, Ministry of Social Welfare and NASSIT

He pledge his determination to fight maladministration in public life and indicated his institutions receive complaints from aggrieved persons, handling backlog cases as well as resolve emerging complaints the falls within the remit of the Ombudsman.