By Soriba Samura
The Justice Adeliza Showers Commission of Inquiry looking into the adoption of some twenty-nine children facilitated by the non-governmental organization Help A Needy Child International (HANCI) has ended its hearings of testimonies by concerned parents who registered to testify before the Commission.
The last set of parents who testified before the Commission included Mr Kabba Bangura CW 30, M’balu Kargbo CW 31 and Isatu Kamara CW 32,
Mr Kabba Bangura from Kamawonie village in Kamakwie, Sella Limba chiefdom and a father of thirteen children, among them Kadiatu Bangura who was adopted via HANCI. He told the Commission that he handed over his daughter to Henry Abu. Henry Abu assured him that Kadiatu will be educated up to university level through her adopted guardians. “I was so happy to receive such information,” Mr Bangura said. Asked by Justice Showers whether he was given documents or whether he signed an agreement to which he replied, “I can’t read or write but I thumb printed to demonstrate my affirmation to the agreement because Henry Abu told me my daughter will be back after four years.”
M’balu Kargbo, from Kamafufein village also in Kamakwie and Sella Limba chiefdom, could not speak no less a language than Limba so the Commission hired an interpreter to voice over her Limba words. She told the Commission through the interpreter that she handed her two children Marie Kamara and Memuna Kamara, four and three years of age respectively; at the time they were taken away. Again she was convinced by the promise given her by Henry Abu of educating the children up to University level. “I was convinced by my late husband to agree to handover the two children to Henry Abu” adding that anytime my husband visited the center in Makeni where the children where they were first kept he always told good stories about the welfare and state of Memuna and Marie.
“When my husband died I took up the task of searching for and asked Henry Abu for my daughters but he always told me I should not be worried about the children because they were safe,” she stated.
Asked by the Commission whether she would want her children to go back in the village with her if they are found M’balu replied that she was not asking for the two children for them to return back to the village but she just wanted to see them or at least communicate with them from anywhere in the world they may be.
Isatu Kamara of Kamakwie also a widow and mother of Fatu Kargbo who was taken by HANCI mentioned the name of another person called Lamin who approached her for her daughter Fatu. Lamin she told the Commission offered to assist her to take care of Fatu Kargbo after the sudden death of her husband. “He told me Fatu will be educated in Freetown. I was never given a document to sign,” she informed the Commission adding that since she was still mourning the death of my husband she could not travel to Freetown to see her daughter.
“This is all I have to say”, she concluded.
The Commission now has to decide when they will start to hear from HANCI personnel for their own part of the story.