By: Kemeseng Sanneh and Momodou Jarju
BANJUL—Work is to resume at the Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation (SSHFC) today after the staff put the headquarters on a lockdown on Tuesday 28 August. The lockdown which lasted for more than five hours was in protest against the suspension of Mr Momodou Camara, a representative of the staff association.
Reports have it that 271 staffs out of 341 signed the petition for the removal of SSHFC Managing Director Manjang.
“We want the authorities to revoke the suspension of our staff representative, Momodou Camara. He is not an accused but it’s MD Manjang who is the accused person here,” Kebba Touray, Assistant Funds Manager of Pension Unit said.
A petition signed by staff members, addressed to the President makes allegations against the Corporation’s Managing Director on corruption, nepotism and favouritism, amongst others. When a delegation met officials at state house in he expressed his dissatisfaction on the taskforce setup to look into the matter.
Mr. Touray referred reporters to remarks of the President at his press conference of 14 August when he said, “Since the incident happened, my Secretary General has been engaging Social Security and also with my team to see how best we can solve this problem. We wanted the board to handle the situation. There were complaints that part of the board is bias. Now we have set an independent inquiry to look into it and make a decision.”
“But two days after the pronouncement of the president to set an independent inquiry to look into the matter and come up with a decision our staff representative was suspended for three months, meaning we are misinformed,” he said.
The Chief of Defense Staff, Lieutenant General Masanneh Kinteh, the Director of State Intelligence Services, Mr Ousman Sowe and the Inspector General of Police, Mamour Jobe, arrived at the scene and were able to persuade the staffs of Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation (SSHFC) to end the lockdown.
CDS Kinteh first addressed the angry staffs gathered at the main entrance to the Head Office. He urged for a calm, peaceful and responsible behaviour towards the problem.
“We have our families, wives, husbands, sons and daughters in this country. Our future is in this country,” CDS Kinteh told the angry staffs.