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How CEO Sonko’s alleged fraud came to light

Jul 28, 2021, 12:35 PM | Article By: Adama Tine

A senior official at the Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC), who wishes to remain anonymous in an interview with this source yesterday, said that actions of the recently sacked KMC CEO Mrs. Sainabou Martin Sonko, had directly violated the Local Government Finance Audit Act as well as the Public Finance Act 2014.

Mrs. Sainabou Martin Sonko according to reports, alledgedly acquired a bank loan in the name of the Staff Association of KMC without their consent and used the funds to acquire a property which has been “grossly overvalued and also forged the council’s documents and approval to obtain a guarantee purportedly from KMC” “to secure the said loan.

Her actions constitute criminal offence ranging from fraud, tax evasion and theft, officials say.

According to our source, there’s a requirement in the law that if the council has to go for a loan, they should have the prior approval of the Hon. Minister which was never done in this case despite the fact that it was staff welfare.

He added that whereas the council is to secure a loan, they must have the approval of the minister and the council should guarantee an entity and normally a resolution but in this case he said, nothing of such happened neither was the matter brought before the general council to resolve.

He said the revelation about the former CEO came up one day while they were about to have a directors meeting when one member of the staff association revealed to the mayor that the committee that was about to be dissolved took a loan guaranteed by the mayor himself and the council, which was a very big shock to the mayor as he was never aware of that and that prompted him to start investigations.

“Upon investigations we realised that D12 million was secured as loan by the CEO Mrs. Sainabou Martin Sonko on behalf of the KMC staff welfare to purchase a land of 100x 100m,” our source continued.

“We were also told at the gathering that immediately that loan was disbursed, D10 million was paid into the account of the land vendor and thereafter over D1 million was withdrawn from the staff welfare,” disclosed the source.

He further revealed to our reporter that the council has also recommended the termination of the appointment of the CEO of KMC and other individuals involved in the matter. In addition, in relation to a digital revenue collection contract, a complete investigation and committee review was recommended with immediate effect.

When asked about the case of the recently resigned deputy mayor of KMC, Musa Bah, on Monday amid a reports that he solicited bribes of up to one million dalasis from a company, our source said: “The council has not disbursed that said amount but had only disbursed D400,000.00 (four hundred thousand dalasis) to that company as an advance payment of a contract so where that one million comes from I don’t know neither the mayor,” he noted.

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