The Ministry of Local Government and Community Affairs announced today, September 18, 2023, that it will be investigating the funding of Freetown's Mayor-Elect Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr's trip to the United States. One of her engagements during the trip was with the New Haven Sister Cities Organization, where she met with Mayor Elicker, members of the organization, and the leadership of the New Haven Amistad Committee.
In a subsequent correspondence, she was addressed as Mayor-Elect, which led to questions about the legality of her actions. These discussions prompted the aforementioned release from the Ministry of Local Government.
The release continued that, given Aki-Sawyerr's party's decision to refrain from any involvement in governance, she had failed to present herself for the swearing-in ceremony and that acting in a capacity related to the Office of the Mayor is considered misleading and fraudulent.
Based on this, the Ministry has emphasized that the Sierra Leonean Ambassador to the United States will be contacting the Mayor of New Haven to clarify the situation, while investigations into the source of funding for Aki-Sawyerr's trip will be launched.
Madam Aki-Sawyerr has responded that the email addressing her as Mayor-Elect was one of gratitude for her visit and is in no way connected to the signing of a treaty, which was originally signed in 1996.