By Sulaiman Juldeh Bah
Inhabitants of Kono, where also the 70.9 carat diamond was found have asked for their share of the money after it was sold for USD$6.5 million in New York late 2017.
The diamond was found in by one Pastor Emmanuel Momoh at Koyadu in Kono district.
It was later handed to government for sale.
The gem stone, one of Sierra Leone’s biggest ever found was to be sold and parties concerned given fair share of the proceeds.
It has now emerged that residents of Koyadu are yet to benefit the 25% promised them out of the 60% share of government.
This, however, has seen them demanding from government their own share to enable them develop their community.
Shar Wondi, Director General National Minerals Agency (NMA), after the sale of the diamond said 40% of the proceeds will be given to Pastor Momoh and 60% to government; from which 25% will be allocated for community development to people of Koyadu community.
He said, for him, the matter has been closed shortly after Pastor Momoh receives his own share.
That the 25% allocation promised residents of Koyadu for community development will be given to them.
But according to Network Movement for Justice and Development (NMJD), share payable to Koyadu people is yet to reach them.
Joseph Shar Ansumana, regional coordinator NMJD said three months ago, officials of NMA, other stakeholders visited Koyadu guiding the people their 25% share of the diamond should be used for the construction of community center, health center, schools, water wells and solar lights.
He maintained however that since the visit of NMA in Koyadu, nothing has happened and the people are frustrated that the talked about community development appears to be nothing to write home about.
That from NMJD’s findings, it is discovered that no proper arrangement in the form of written agreement was made between NMA and the people, adding also that consultation was never made with residents of Koyadu on projects identified.