By Ishmael Bayoh
Addressing African Foreign Ministers and diplomats at the opening ceremony of the 8th Ministerial Conference of the Forum on china-africa cooperation in Senegal, President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping outlined development and cooperation packages for Africa.
The theme of the conference is ‘Deepening China-Africa Partnership and Promoting Sustainable Development to Build a China-Africa Community with a Shared Future in the New Era.
Recalling the important support from some African countries to China, President Xi said “China will never forget the profound friendship with Africa and will work even stronger on this friendship”.
He outlined proposals for the fight against COVID-19 with solidarity support to the AU to achieve its 60% vaccination drive. He also disclosed that China will deepen practical cooperation and expand trade, investment and also promote entrepreneurship.
President Xi also spoke about promoting green development and upholding equity, justice as China’s core values of democracy.
On China-Africa 2035 vision, President Xi outlined nine intervention programmes by China to Africa. In the medical and health programs, he spoke on the help to the AU as China will provide 1billion COVID-19 doses to Africa. Six hundred thousand (600,000) doses as donations; four hundred thousand (400,000) by joint production; 10 medical health programs and 1,000 medical personnel to Africa.
President Xi also said on poverty reduction in Africa, China will lay emphasis on agricultural collaboration and investment with 900 agricultural experts and 10 agricultural companies. Taking along trade promotion programs, he revealed the opening of trade routes and provision of zero tariff with countries having diplomatic relations with China.
He announced the provision of 10 billion USD to support Africa export, provide 10 connectivity projects in Africa and invest in Africa investment promotion programs.
With that he stated, China will provide 10billion USD in the next 3 years to Africa with 10 industrialization projects and credit facilities to SMEs.
President Xi took importance of digital economy projects to Africa, green development projects and capacity building projects where China will build or refurbish 10 schools or refurbish in Africa. Also invite 10,000 African professionals to China and create 800,000 jobs.
China will continue with their cultural and people to people programs as well as undertake peace and security programs by providing military assistance to the AU and conduct joint military exercises with Africa peacekeeping forces.
Sierra Leone’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Professor David J. Francis, Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, H.E Ernest Ndomahina and Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to Dakar, Senegal H.E Alhaji Brima Elvis Koroma are part of the FOCAC conference with their counterparts in Africa and hundreds of other African diplomats.
The meeting would ‘review and assess the follow-up implementation of the outcomes of the 2018 FOCAC Beijing Summit as well as the joint China-Africa response to Covid-19, and chart the course for China-Africa relations for the next three years and more to come.
Domestic Helpers’ Organization-SL Hosts 2nd Stakeholders Meeting
By Anthony Vandy
The program’s goal is to keep stakeholders informed about Sierra Leone’s implementation of Convention No. 198.
To assist in the mapping out of domestication discussion No.189’s methods and actors in Sierra Leone
Madam Florence Hellen Challe, a paralegal for Domestic Helpers Organization Sierra Leone, welcomed guests and participants, saying the workshop is targeted on enhancing and supporting domestic workers’ knowledge of their value standards and what they stand for.
She said people are suffering silently as domestic helpers and people do not appreciate their work, she said, citing examples such as no day off, no leave, and so on.
The founder and CEO of The Domestic Helpers Organization, Madam Chelse Alma Aminata Heroe, spoke to this medium about the importance of domestic workers, saying that the project’s title is Promoting Decent Work for Domestic Workers, for inclusive and sustainable employment and economic progress.
“Making right and responsibilities a reality for domestic workers, the legal framework gap, and what needs to be done in order to make decent work a reality,” she stated.
She went on to state that her organization is concerned about the poor quality of services and working conditions for domestic employees.
She described her organization as a women-led group that assists with house, office, and workplace cleaning.
She stated that her organization is dedicated to promoting good work for domestic workers, and as a result, she is focused on the most marginalized domestic workers in society, as well as working toward a desirable working environment.
She did, however, emphasize that her organization is urging the public to treat domestic workers with respect, highlighting activities carried out by her organization, such as conducting needs assessments, forming savings groups, establishing modern training centers for the training of hundreds of domestic workers, engaging stakeholders, and advocating for the formalization of the informal sector.
In an interview with this medium, Chair Man of the Program Daniel Sesay stated that domestic workers are under a lot of pressure and face a lot of challenges. He also stated that people should break down the barriers of silence surrounding domestic worker violations and allow the laws to protect them.
Let there be initiatives aimed toward the improvement of domestic employees.
Mamusu Sesay, speaking on behalf of the National Domestic Workers Union, stated that the government should ensure that robust laws are in place to protect and guide their rights and lives.
She claimed to have worked as a domestic helper for 25 years.
She expressed gratitude to Domestic Workers Organization for assisting them with their legal difficulties through their paralegal staff.
She claims they had been the victims of domestic violence.