A diamond weighing 709 carats lately found in Kono District east of Sierra Leone seems be in dividing line, but government says “it is now in a safe awaiting sale.”
Statement from office of the Presidential spokesperson evidently states that the diamond is safe and can be reached by anyone anytime.
Such was likewise supported by Sahr Wonday, Director General National Minerals Agency, as he yesterday told a local radio station that: “the diamond can be reached by interested Sierra Leoneans without any restrain,” claimed also that “the Sierra Leone government has contacted agents referred to as Rapaport in Belgium for the sale of the diamond latest this September.”
But allusions are that the diamond has been sold with proceeds unreflective of ordinary Sierra Leoneans as direct beneficiaries.
Recent statement by office of the Presidential spokesperson has seen many giving a new name to the diamond, calling it “furniture in a showroom for view.”
It is true diamonds valuing millions of dollars have been found in Sierra Leone, particularly Kono District, but have had governments past and present converting same to their use and benefits, not giving any account to Sierra Leone and Sierra Leoneans.
Fear as in minds of people relate to the fact that the 709 carats diamond may likewise be sold with nothing to show for it in the future.
Recent interview with NMA’s Director General has revealed how agents so far approached for the sale of the diamond have opted doing so free of charge, only that expenditure incurred on insurance, other issues will have to be refunded.
It is true some months past, buyers from number of countries flooded Sierra Leone to buy the diamond, but were rejected on grounds of price disagreement by government.
This, however, has created doubts in the minds of people as to the willingness of government in the transparent and accountable sale of the diamond.
Their concerns are that government has for a while now not informed the public about information relating to the sale of the diamond.
In 2012 and 13, Sierra Leone reportedly exported over five hundred thousand carats of diamonds; four thousand times larger than the preached out 709 carats diamond.
And in 2013 alone, diamonds so far exported from Sierra Leone amounted to 331,471 carats and valued USD $102, 205, 588.
But Sierra Leoneans over the years have been swimming in indescribable poverty, save to say ‘dying’ owing to lack of food or no proper diet undeniable.
The 709 carats diamond now cataloged ‘furniture in a showroom’ may likely be sold at a price far beyond people’s expectation.