Sierra Leone denies film's corruption claims
The Sierra Leone government held crisis meetings last week after undercover film-makers claimed to have exposed a chain of corruption and deceit linked to illegal logging which is destroying the west African country's environment.
The documentary, produced by Emmy award-winning Sierra Leonean film-maker Sorious Samura, is said to include footage of Vice-President Samuel Sam-Sumana offering to help an illegal timber company by suggesting he would not reintroduce the export ban on hardwood, which has been temporarily lifted.
The Sierra Leone war, which ended in 2002, was one of the most brutal conflicts of recent times in Africa. Rebels operating for former Liberian President Charles Taylor and financed by the extraction of so-called "blood diamonds" terrorised the population. Countless people were killed and thousands were maimed by fighters and child soldiers who cut off limbs with machetes.
Over the weekend the government in Freetown reacted to the documentary, which was first reported on Al Jazeera. "We are taking it very, very seriously," said Sheka Tarawalie, deputy minister of Information and Communication. "We are looking at this clip and we are doing some verification ... There is no sacred cow in this government," he said, echoing a favourite line of President Ernest Bai Koroma in his campaign against official corruption.
Mr Sam-Sumana's press officer Andrew Collier denied any wrongdoing by the Vice-President. "The man is above that ... He's not going to resign."
- 1 Christians: The world's most persecuted people
- 2 Israel-Gaza conflict: The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
- 3 Thatcher ‘was warned of Tory child sex party claims’
- 5 The Simpsons Family Guy trailer: First look at crossover episode after Comic-Con debut
A new Russian revolution: The cracks are starting to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Thatcher ‘was warned of Tory child sex party claims’
Israel-Gaza conflict: President Obama presses Netanyahu to call ‘immediate and unconditional’ Gaza ceasefire
Lauren Goodger sex tape: Reality star calls for tougher laws on revenge porn after intimate video leaks online
Iraq crisis: End 'very near' for Christianity after Isis takeover, says Bishop
Israel-Gaza conflict: The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Opponents of Israel's military operation in Gaza are the real enemies of Middle Eastern peace
Were 'Poor Doors' added to mixed developments so wealthy residents don't have to go in alongside social housing tenants?
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
£90 - £162 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education are looking fo...
£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant EBD , Septemb...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Outstanding Teaching Assistants needed f...
£85 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Preston: Randstad Education are urgentl...