In recent days the scenes of people arduously waiting in long queues to confirm their registration in the national civil registration exercise was a common occurrence in schools and other designated centres.
The event was initially slated to last for nine days but due to the overwhelming turnout of people in center, the national civil registration authority (NCRA) has thought it prudent and wise to extend the period for another one week.
The aim of the extension period is to provide an opportunity for all and sundry to be captured in the national registration exercise.
Below is the press release issued by NCRA in respect of the extension of the national civil registration exercise?
The national civil registration authority has in a press statement dated on the 14 May, 2021 extended the National civil registration and confirmation in the western area which was started on the 6th may and ends on the 15th May 2021
In a press statement thought the exercise supposed to end on the 15 May 2021 but because the turn-out of the public is overwhelming thus dictating the demand to accommodate them beyond the scheduled date.
The release continued that the NCRA being desirous to leave no one behind, in consultation with the Ministry of finance has decided to extend the exercise by seven (7) MORE DAYS i.e from the 15 to the 22nd May, 2021 for the western area region covering Urban and Rural District.
The release encouraged the general public to make use of the extended period to present themselves at the designated centres to either confirm their personal information held with the authority or register if they have not yet done so.
The statement furthered that in the main time confirmation and registration exercise that should commence in the north on the 22nd May2021 including details of schedules for the other regions will be announced shortly.
The authority also wishes to encourage the public i.e children whether school going or not, adults, young, old etc to make use of this opportunity to confirm their personal information or registrar if they have not yet done so.
The press release says that the centers will be opened from 8:00 through 6:00pm daily with roaming teams organized to support static centres and continue to count on the cooperation of the public including stakeholders to support the successful conduct of the confirmation and registration.
COI JUDGE DIES
Justice Rosolu John Bankole Thompson Ex- Judge Special Court and recently commissioner in the commissions of enquiry(COI) to investigate corruption in the previous APC government has passed away over the week end.
He was the only Sierra Leonean judge who was appointed by president Bio to serve as a presiding judge in one of the commissions of enquiry, that was established to probe officials of the Koroma led government who are believed to have inflicted financial loss to the government and people of Sierra Leone.
The circumstances that led to his imminent death is unclear but messages of condolence has been pouring in from Sierra Leoneans at home and abroad expressing sympathy to the family of the towering judge especially in the social media.
He was David Brennan Endowed professor in comparative constitutional Law at Akron University in 1987.
His achievements in the legal profession is widely recognized both domestically and internationally as a practicing lawyer and lecturer in different parts of the world and in his home country at the Law School Sierra Leone.
Judge Thompson has authored several articles and books and his intellectual and academic contribution to the legal community both nationally and globally would be irreplaceably missed.
The date for his funeral announcement is yet to be announced and the public would be kept abreast in due course for the funeral arrangement and subsequent internment.
May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace.
VP Juldeh Engages Mange Bureh Indigenes
The Hon. Vice President Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh has engage stakeholders in Mangeh Bureh chiefdom and Maconteh.
To the amazement of the Vice president, he was received in a tumulus manner which was a big surprise to him.
The Vice president was received in pomp and pageantry in the usual Mangeh Bureh style of booboo dancing and cultural performances. He observed Juma prayers at the Masgid Rahman and later addressed people at the Barry before starting his usual stakeholders’ engagements.
At the Barry meeting, the former Popular All Peoples Congress (APC) Honourable, Hassan Sheriff called on the people of Mangeh and Maconteh Chiefdoms to support the government and the VP whom he referred to as his younger brother. He used the occasion to outline the outstanding programs that the new direction government has undertaken and continue to undertake in both chiefdoms.
In his statement, the VP reminded the people that Mange Bureh is the home of SLPP and they should all follow the footsteps of Kandeh Bureh and support the SLPP. He told the people that President Bio will visit Mange in the near future. The VP held meetings with several stakeholder groups including chiefs, Imams, teachers and youths. The VP will be in the north-west for the next two days.
IPRP Investigates Procurement Irregularities At Prisons
The Sierra Leone Correctional Services is on the spotlight for the wrong reasons, regarding allegations of procurement irregularities filed by one of the suppliers of diet to the Kabala Correctional Service.
Below is the press release issued the Independent Procurement Review panel (IPRP) which is the body charged with the responsibility to review complaints or appeal from dissatisfied bidders, private contractors about decisions of the procuring entity in procurement process.
IPRP INVESTIGATES ALLEGE IRREGULARITIES AGAINST SIERRA LEONE CORRECTIONALSERVICE
The Independent Procurement Review Panel (IPRP) on the 5th of May 2021, received a complaint from FODZER ENTERPRISE(the appellant)against the Sierra Leone Correctional Service(Respondent)on allegations of alledged procurement irregularities bordering on supply of regular diet for the Kabala Correctional Service.
The IPRP has opened a formal investigation with the said complaint and is expected to conclude the process within the statutory period, the IPRP is a creature of section 65(1) of the public procurement Act no 10 of 2016.
The IPRP is charged with the responsibility to review complaints or appeal from dissatisfied bidders, private contractors about decisions of the procuring entity in procurement process.
Further, the procurement process of Sierra Leone is governed by the Public Procurement Act No10.2016 and the regulation Statutory Instrument no 15 of 2020.
UNDP Offers XL Motorbikes to Judiciary
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), under its Rule of Law Portfolio has donated two brand new XL motorbikes to the Judiciary of Sierra Leone.
The move, according to Cheryl Sembie, UNDP’s Senior Rule of Law and Human Rights Officer, is aimed at fast-tracking the administrative work of the Sexual Offences Model Court and expediting the administration of justice.
The Sexual Offences Model Court was established by the Hon. Chief Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards to help address the difficulties victims of sexual offences and witnesses faced in testifying about the intricate details of sexual offences and their vulnerability either by age or fear of stigmatization.
It also provides for effective victim-witness support services that will reduce trauma, eliminate secondary victimization, increase victim’s cooperation and attendance at the trial and ensure the timely conclusion of matters.
The two Motorbikes including their Helmets and Toolkits were handed over to the Court Operations Manager Mrs. Olayinka Laggah in the presence of the Facilities and Assets Officer, Mr. James Sesay with their licensing process to be completed.
Mrs. Laggah on behalf of the Hon. Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards commended the UNDP leadership in the country. She described UNDP as a dependable partner, assuring that the motorbikes would be used for the intended purpose.
Covid-19 Pandemic Hits Vegetable Farmers
By Anthony Vandy
Agriculture in Sierra Leone is a significant part of the country’s economy. Data by Statistics Sierra Leone (SSL) shows that two-third of the country’s population is involved in subsequent agriculture. Amidst this, vegetable farmers in the country mostly in Western Area are women; whilst some are widows and single parents.
With all the developments of growing vegetables, there has been some challenges due to the current COVID-19 pandemic that has affected the world. Sierra Leone vegetables farmers have faced with challenges of sales stations, storage facilities, low sales etc. due to some of the measures set to eliminate the pandemic.
vegetable farmers and traders in Regent Village in the Western Rural District have expressed frustration over the fall in prices of their products resulting in huge losses following the government ban on periodic markets and movement restrictions in the country.
Vegetable farmers and traders usually transport their goods to markets in the capital Freetown, for sales to other traders and consumers. According to these farmers and traders, things have become different during the COVID19 pandemic as sales is now very slow and profits very low.
Mariama Kietta, is the deputy women’s leader for National Federation of farmers and the coordinator for Ogoo Farmers Association in the western rural.
In an exclusive interview she explained that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, their livelihood have been severely affected as they have faced with access to markets and customers.
Their cooperative she said is made up of thirty (30) groups with a total of 750 Women across the country, and vegetable farming and trading is their sole source of income to support themselves and their families.
Before COVID19 “each group used to plant two to five acres of vegetables to produce cabbages, tomatoes, garden eggs lettuces, onions, carrots, peppers, etc., with a turnover worth SLL 7 million ($70), but that this has changed drastically as we have been discouraged to embarking on large-scale farming because of lockdowns and banned on social gathering that limits our access markets.” Mariama asserted.
She disclosed that the prices of vegetables are now determined by traders and customers because they lack access to markets. “A bag of cabbage which we use to sell SLL 700,000 ($70) is now SLL 500,000 ($50) and we are forced to sell this way because we do not have storage facilities that can preserve these perishable commodities”, she stated.
Wiping while recalling the huge losses she and others incurred, she said that “that is the worst time in the history of vegetable farming as our only source of livelihood has been ruined because of the ban on travel and social gatherings”.
She explained that every week, they used to transport sixty tons of vegetables to markets in Freetown, but on one of the days they were about to do so, some authorities suddenly prevented them from travelling. “Our vegetables perished like nobody’s business by the time we were preparing to pay back a loan we took from a community bank” she added.
Abraham Carl Samura the communications person for Small Holders Commercialization and Agribusiness Business Development Project (SCADeP) said the institution was set up to support local farmers.
He continued that the organization is helping vegetable farmers by distributing seedlings to different villages and districts across the country to farmers who have been affected by the Corona pandemic.
“We are aware about the challenges vegetable farmers are faced with during this pandemic, that’s why we are giving them support because if not, they will no longer farm or take care of their families” Samura added.
Sylvanus Keha Koroma one of the farmer said that before now they were faced with challenges of climate change, advanced farming technologies, access to tools, seedlings and loan, storage facilities and wider market. “COVID19 has made thing worse for us, especially the women and we were fighting to cope with our existing challenges as the pandemic did not only came with its own challenges but made things worst” he added.
Mr. Koroma called on government, agribusiness institutions including banks to support with vegetable farmers especially women who are very committed to the trade and has been gravely affected by the pandemic.
“The COVID pandemic has brought so many problems on vegetable farming and trading and yet no barter system has been involved with customers and fellow gardeners” he said.
Compiled with a fellowship support from Journalists for Human Rights (JHR) and the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ).
Govt to Construct Hotel & Tourism Training Centre
The Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs and the National Tourist Board (NTB) with support from the Sustainable Tourism Development and Promotion Project (STDPP) financed by the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) Tier 2 have in a ceremony held at the Milton Margai College of Education and Technology (MMCET) turned the sod for the reconstruction/rehabilitation of the 24 bedroom hotel, kitchen, prep/service room and 6 classrooms of the Hotel and Tourism Training Centre (HTTC), Brookfields campus.
Giving the Purpose of the gathering, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Andrew L. Sorie said that the Ministry and NTB have taken the queue from President Bio in building human capital, empahasing that for the hospitality sector to grow, it must be treated with the quality it deserves, hence the reconstruction/rehabilitation of the facilities of HTTC.
Articulating the overview of the project, the General Manager of the National Tourist Board, Fatmata Kroma said that the implementation of the STDPP financed by the EIF Trust Fund started on the 20th May, 2012 after the execution and signing of the MOU between the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and the Government of Sierra Leone. She stated that the total fund committed was USD2,990,000 for a period of three years to undertake development initiatives proposed by NTB that covers sector governance, product development , marketing and capacity building
She noted that the project was forestalled and at the risk of loosing the funding opportunity, but with the appointments of the Tourism Minister and the Minister of Trade, they pioneered the conversation with the EIF Donor Partners for the recommencement of the project, adding that in consideration of the prudent fiscal financial management policies of the government as well as the leadership exhibited by the Minister of Tourism, Dr. Pratt, approval was given to recommence the STDPP-EIF Tier 2 on the proviso that the project should be repackaged and aligned with the National Mid-Term Development Agenda.
She concluded that the project was repackaged and approved in February, 2020 at the tune of USD1.5Million.
The Principal, MMCET, Dr. Phillip Kanu said that for us to move as a nation, tourism must be at the forefront, hence the reconstruction/rehabilitation of the HTTC Brookfiels Campus. He applauded the Minister of Dr. Pratt and the Minister of Technical and Higher Education, Professor Alpha T. Wurie for their roles in reviving MMCET.
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Edward H. Sandy in his remarks said that one of the best ways to change the nation is to strengthen its human capacity in meeting the demands of the labor market, domestically and internationally. He continued that Sierra Leone has numerous potentials particularly in the tourism sector which is largely untapped.
In his statement, the Minister of Technical and Higher Education, Professor Alpha T. Wurie gave a brief background of MMCET saying that Sierra Leone began to think futuristically many years ago. He expressed delight that the Ministry of Tourism is investing in its own property, the MMCET. He furthered that MMCET will be a Technical University with degree options in Tourism. He applauded the Principal of MMCET, Dr. Phillip Kanu for the leadership shown in restructuring MMCET.
The Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Dr. Memunatu Pratt in her keynote address maintained that despite the devastating effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic on the Tourism and Hospitality sector, her Ministry has undertaken many reforms and infrastructural developments with the focus on positioning the industry to becoming a powerful catalyst for improving the socio-economic conditions of Sierra Leoneans.
She said that the success and competitiveness of our destination highly depends on the competence and quality of our human resource capacity that requires suitable expertise in order to provide the appropriate services for the Tourism and Hospitality industry, hence the turning of the sod for the construction of the training college as a clear signal of the expected increase in demand for a technical tertiary training college on hospitality management.
She pointed out that the drive to the transformation of the Tourism and Hospitality sector is based on five pillars; tapping into new markets, developing new products, promoting investments, building new partnerships and strengthening human capital. She noted that President Bio under his leadership prioritized Human Capital Development as his flagship program that aims at generating a critical sector of highly educated, trained and skilled citizens with the capacity to undertake research and development, pursue innovations and learning and start productive SMEs.
She stated that the repackaged STDPP prioritizes the HTTC with addressing several needs, saying that the HTTC needs substantial refurbishment and renovation of its facilities that include the 24 bedroom hotel, classrooms, kitchen and prep and serving rooms.
She concluded by applauding the government of President Bio and particularly the former Minister of Finance, Jacob J. Saffa for their roles in ensuring that the STDPP is launched.
UN Probes President Bio’s Awful Human Rights as the SLPP Govt PRs Bury Bad News
By Abu Shaw in London
Today is a memorable day for victims of human rights violations as the United Nations launch a review on Sierra Leone’s awful human rights record.
This is fantastic news for the innocent victims of the innumerable Sierra Leoneans who have been senselessly killed and systematically injured in the past three years by the State-Sponsored Security Personnel orchestrated by the corrupt SLPP government of President Julius Maada Bio. Latest reports say the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review UPR Working Group will today Wednesday, May 12, 2021 review Sierra Leone’s Human Rights Records in continuation of the examination process which started months ago with the completion of two previous reviews on President Bio’s violent-oriented regime. (Photo: Dead prisoners at Pademba Road Prison in April 2020).
State House sources in Freetown confirmed this week that President Bio and his barbaric government are on a knife-edge since last week cogitating and wondering whether the outcome of the UN Human Rights Council’s probe today in Geneva, Switzerland would be positive or negative for them. Political observers believe the awful human rights abuses under the ruling SLPP government will be difficult to be swept under the carpet any longer.
Despite the millions of US dollars of Sierra Leonean monies spent by President Bio on foreign and national media houses and public relations organisations for propaganda and branding purposes, the reality on the ground is glaringly grim on human rights violations. The critical media in and outside the country have vibrantly continued to highlight the systematic human rights abuses and violence meted out on a daily basis by the SLPP government police and military officers on defenceless citizens nationwide, especially in the stronghold of the main opposition APC party i.e. in the northern province and in the north-west of Sierra Leone.
With the attention of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review Group now firmly focused on the Sierra Leone government, today’s review is a momentous day for the hundreds of bereaved family members and victims of violence, intimidation and harassment to see justice and accountability done. “Hopefully, the UN would find President Bio and his autocratic regime’s involvement in human rights violations guilty,” a group of mothers who lost their children in the Makeni massacre said last night.
The SLPP government and cohorts have applied every trick under the sun to hide and downplay the atrocities committed by state security since April 4, 2018, when President Bio took overpower. The government did not even set up an independent commission to look into these various massacres. But the persistence and relentlessness of critical newspapers and social media activists in exposing the heinous crimes against humanity has alerted the international community to pay special attention to Sierra Leone. (Photos: UNHRC and the Makeni massacre).
Finally today, the die is now cast as Sierra Leone’s Human Rights record will be examined by the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review UPR Working Group for the third time. Reports say the meeting will be webcast live at webtv.un.org.@ohchr. This information was relayed by British legal mind Richard Honey QC @RichardHoney. He said there’s an interesting set of questions to be asked of the government of Sierra Leone by @USEmbFreetown at the @UNHRC meeting today.
The pertinent questions that President Bio and his caboodle would be expected to answer include thus – What is the status of the investigation into the 2020 Pademba Road Correctional Centre that resulted in the deaths of one corrections officer and more than 30 inmates and injury of scores of individuals? What reforms of the correctional system does the government of Sierra Leone plan to implement in response to the riot?
What steps is the government of Sierra Leone taking to reduce the problems of lengthy partial detention in the country? Does the government plan to hire and more legal professionals? Does the government plan to allocate more resources to improve the administration of the court system? What is the government of Sierra Leone doing to ensure a timely, inclusive and constructive constitutional review process, including the participation of civil society and other stakeholders? However, President Bio’s well-paid PR merchants are working overtime to deceive the international partners about the real awful situation on the ground. Here is a misleading press release released a few months ago by the SLPP government’s leading PRO Dr Lansana Gberie, the Ambassador to Switzerland. Excerpts as follows –
Sierra Leone Scores Milestone in Global Human Rights Accountability and Transparency
Geneva, Switzerland, Monday 1st February 2021 – Sierra Leone this week submitted its national human rights progress report to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, marking a significant milestone in respect of His Excellency, President Dr Julius Maada Bio’s commitment to Human Rights Accountability and Transparency. The report, prepared with the assistance of a renowned International Consultant funded by the United Nations to ensure its objectivity, covers all facets of the human rights and rule of law situation in Sierra Leone. Ambassador Dr Lansana Gberie, Sierra Leone’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations and other International Organisations, tabled the report to the UN Office of High Commissioner on Human Rights on behalf of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mrs Nabeela Tunis, on 31 January 2021. (Photos: Fake diplomat and useless Dr Lans Gberie and Mr Michael Mansaray, right, presently in detention for merely but correctly criticising President Bio’s awful regime in Bo).
The 32-page report highlights the government’s commitment to “fundamental human rights and freedoms of individuals,” noting that “all the core non-derogable rights have been firmly safeguarded” by the Bio administration. The report underlines particularly the government’s commitment to the Independence of the Judiciary, citing the recent treason trials. The trial process of Paolo Conteh, which lasted for around three months from July 2020, “helped to underscore the independence of the judiciary as envisaged under the 1991 constitution and fair trial principles,” the report says. In an unprecedented decision, the government did not attempt to influence the jury selection process and when the 12-person jury “returned their verdict of not guilty on 11 of the charges including treason,” Bio’s government “complied with the decision of the court,” the report says. There are no political prisoners in Sierra Leone, says the report.
The report notes impressive records of actions and measures taken by the Government to implement the 177 recommendations it had accepted from the UN during the last review of the country’s human rights record. Through the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, the Government of Sierra Leone worked with Parliament to ratify in July 2019 a total of seven conventions from the International Labour Organisation. With these Conventions, Sierra Leone is now in a better position to protect victims of forced labour, domestic and migrant works, as well as guarantee minimum standards in the provision of social security.
The National Human Rights Report will be published by the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva. It will be subjected to peer review and scrutiny by Member States of the UN, other UN agencies, civil society organisations, and international non-governmental organisations. A delegation from Sierra Leone and the Embassy and Permanent Mission in Geneva will participate in the open review of Sierra Leone’s human rights record in May 2021. This review will include an interactive dialogue among the UN Member States, and other stakeholders including CSOs. This will be the 3rd UN review of Sierra Leone’s national human rights record under the mechanism known as the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). Sierra Leone’s first two UPR reviews took place in 2011 and 2016.
After the review in May, Sierra Leone will then consider the recommendations that the other UN Member States will make during the review and decides which of those recommendations to accept and to note. Following the 2016 2nd UPR review, Sierra Leone received 208 recommendations and accepted 177, and noted 31 of those recommendations. (Photo: APC supporter was killed by SLPP supporter in Kailahun and nobody has been arrested. And a young man Sarjoh Forster, right, was shot by security attached to the Internal Affairs Minister Lawrence Leema. Sadly, poor Forster was instead arrested and still languishing in prison).
SLPP Government PR Dr Lansana Gberie Blasted for Misinforming the Global Partners
Reverend Leeroy Wilfred Kabs Kanu, the publisher of the Cocorioko newspaper and former Minister Plenipotentiary to the UN in the last APC government of President Ernest Koroma, did not mince his words: “Gberie is abusing the UN system because he worked there before. He is a criminal without any human feeling for our people who have suffered so much under this wicked government. Gberie is one of the criminals hired by the Mafia boss Maada Bio to use international contacts to prepare criminal reports like these about the government.
“However, these criminal reports will not save the SLPP because the people who will vote in 2023 know otherwise. When we take back power, I see a lot of weeping and gnashing of teeth for some of these criminals. They will be made to pay dearly for the way they are deceiving the international community to prolong the suffering of our people. If they think they will get away with such deceit, they are mistaken. We are preparing for them. There will be recompense.
“Let it be known that what people like Gberie are doing is criminal and that is why they will pay for it. How can you facilitate such criminal lies in the face of the horrendous and well/documented human rights abuses our people have suffered under this heartless and wicked government? Look at all the massacres this government committed at Tombo, the Pademba Road Prisons on April 29, 2020, Lunsar, and the Makeni massacre on July 17-18, 2020? Look at the beating of parliamentarians in the wells of Parliament in 2018? There was no independent investigator. It is just a criminal scheme to disguise the truth and deny our suffering people the redress needed.
50 Yrs China – S/Leone Friendship
Xi Jinping Thought of Diplomacy
The People`s Republic of China through her embassy in Freetown has celebrated 50 years of cooperation together with the republic of sierra Leone at the Bintumani conference Centre Aberdeen, Freetown Sierra Leone.
Chernor Abass Bundu the Honorable Speaker of parliament in Sierra Leone said he is very delighted and deeply honored to serve as guest speaker of such occasion.
The Speaker went on to congratulate both countries for the significant milestone in their bilateral relations.
“I want to also extend sincere felicitations to the government and the people of the republic of china on their 100 years anniversary for the founding of the communist party of china (CPC) and I believe 100 years of governance is no mean achievements the more so when one recalls the tremendous achievement recorded by china over that period under the ruling of the CPC” he said.
The speaker continued that he has no doubt under the CPC, China has become a great beacon of hope like no other and for the people of developing countries like sierra Leone and see china from the third world country to not only super power of the world but the second biggest economy.
He ascertained that china’s phenomenal growth, development and pre-eminence in the world is not only an exemplar of economic success but remarkable whilst at the same time strategically building a solid rock of national harmony and social stability.
The honorable Speaker expresses that lifting hundreds of millions of Chinese people from grinding poverty has demonstrating more than anything else to the rest of the world adding that 50 years ago the leadership of china and sierra Leone has made a historic decision to establish diplomatic relations.
Dr Abass Bundu pointed that the bilateral relationship between the two countries has been more cordial, more tangible and smoother, providing newer and better opportunities every year that passes with both countries and deepening a mutual trust and cooperation in the economic, social and cultural fields.
‘China have continued to multiply in Sierra Leone ever since diplomatic relations were established between the two countries and have taken the form of completed projects in infrastructures, roads and bridges, office buildings, hydropower stations, power transmission, healthcare facilities, schools, etc’. He asserted.
In his final statement the honorable speaker said even in the field of health, china has always readily made available medical experts to provide much to provide much needed support during health emergencies epidemics and pandemic.
Mr. Ahmed Nasralla the president of the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) said since 1971 the friendship between Sierra Leone and China has being growing from strength to strength and it has being one has natural understanding and mitral benefit.
The president expresses that Chinese bi lateral support to Sierra Leone can be sub into many Infrastructure landmarks for growth to public offices from health sector to the ministry sector and agriculture, similarly Sierra Leone Association of Journalist (SLAJ) and the Sierra Leone media generally have enjoyed a very good relationship with the Chinese embassy in Sierra Leone.
“Many journalist has benefited from many scholarships to China on visitations, to do short term courses and 10 journalist where supported to do masters and PHD programs to China over the years about 40 journalist where supported to do short term courses in China, 4 journalist where giving opportunity to train with the Chinese media including my current secretary general” He expressed.
Mr. Nasralla said Sierra Leone Association of Journalist (SLAJ) has established bodies that has benefited from the Chinese embassy office equipment and media extent adding that they need a survey in other to know how these move has impacted the media in Sierra Leone
Mr. Nasralla requested that he may like to see more cooperation’s between the Chinese embassy and the Sierra Leone media especially with the intervention of scholarships and promised that they will also try to engage the Ambassador to see if he will render any other gesture for the media in Sierra Leone.
In his final statement he mentioned that the country need a strong and independent media to be able to support and hold the profession to date and has a very great role to play, by so doing they will be able to approach their leaders and hold them to account so that they can provide the necessary information they needed.
Dr. Kandeh Kandeh Yomkela the leader of the National Grand Coalition (NGC) appreciates the Chinese Ambassador for the invitation extended to him to witness the memorial occasion.
Mr Kandeh said that part of their role as parliamentarians is to advice the government on the environmental development issues and they also provide in environmental input on the environment and ecological dimension on the VIR.
He also previewed to what his excellency president Bio has announced, now looking at picking initiative by 2030 and also approaching next zero by 2060,it was a major anemic that indeed beginning to catalyzed the vision globally that has to do with climate change.
On the issue of global partnership with China-Sierra Leone the leader expresses that he does appreciate the relationship the country has had with the Chinese for over 50years now, he said Sierra Leone celebrate that partnership with land mark that has being identified by the excellent ambassador and the chairman for the foreign relations committee
He also said that he is productively in accounting that cooperation between Sierra Leone and China and he said he has done many trips to China to bring Bankasoka electric project to this country, he said that was the first project under cooperation under stainable energy for all which China donated to Sierra Leone
On the issue of donor governance he said he was happy he measured that he was part of the global governance system for 20years it is critical that they keep on pushing for pines and justice particularly for climate justice, African countries are account for at most 3℅ of global omission just 2℅ of global omission that are coming from the energy sector
Mr Yumkella asserted that African countries will be the worst hit by climate change already we have felt the effect in our country, when we talk about climate change effect.
He added that the role the Chinese have to play will be very important in global negotiations and discussions about funding we need in our country to build climate resilience and it is not just that we emits the least but we will suffer the most in our country with Celsius degrees up to 50 -10.
‘’we have seen in the case of Ethiopia the effect a long drought suddenly there was a flooding there because the rains that supposed to come in 6 months only came in 1 month, so Africa will be the worst hit and Sierra Leone is among the 10 most vulnerable countries”.
Deforestation is high in our country we need to be thought how to replant, how to maintain ourselves.
He however said the honorable speaker and himself are committed to that cause for climate resilience and reforestation in our country otherwise it will be a disaster.
Hu Zhangliang the Chanise Ambassador to Sierra Leone Firstly starts by thanking all those that attended the symposium including the Parliamentery Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists for co-hosting this symposium with the Chinese Embassy.
The Ambassador said that he believe that the symposium will help us further deepen our mutual understanding and strengthen our mutually beneficial cooperation and few weeks ago the Republic of Sierra Leone celebrated its 60th Anniversary of independence.
He continued that China-Sierra Leone relationship is the epitome of the development of China-Africa relations. On July 29, 1971, the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Sierra Leone established diplomatic relations. The past 50 years have proven that China and Sierra Leone are genuine friends.
The Ambassador explained that over the past 50 years, tangible results of the cooperation between our two countries are everywhere to be seen. From the early-day projects like the Youyi Building, National Stadium, China-Sierra Leone Friendship Road, Sierra Leone-China Friendship Hospital, to the more recent projects such as the Second Juba Bridge, Limkokwing-Regent Ring Road, the Myangung Single Officers’ quarters and Officers’ Mess etc., all have a story to tell about China-Sierra Leone friendship.
“In difficult times from the Ebola outbreak in 2014 to the mudslide disaster in 2017, China had always been among the first to provide essential help. When COVID-19 struck Sierra Leone in 2020, the Chinese government and people were again the first to offer a helping hand. Up to now, about TEN rounds of most needed medical supplies such as testing kits, masks, PPEs, ventilators and vaccines have been delivered to Sierra Leone. The three Chinese medical teams in Sierra Leone have been actively participating in pandemic prevention and control with their local counterparts” He ascertained.
He noted that from the past 50 years, Sierra Leone has also been providing valuable support to China. The Chinese people will never forget that Sierra Leone was one of the countries that supported the People’s Republic of China in restoring its lawful seat in the United Nations. Sierra Leone has always adhered to theOne China Principle and supported China on issues concerning China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Sierra Leone has always been an active member of FOCAC and contributed positively to the development of FOCAC mechanism.
“Facts and stories like these are too many to be told. From my analysis of the development of China-Sierra Leone relations, I can tell there are some invaluable experiences worth to be cherished.
Mr Zhanliang explained that no matter how the international situation or China and Sierra Leone’s own development conditions change, the above principles and good practices never change. This is the foundation for mutual trust and mutual respect.
‘China-Sierra Leone cooperation is for the people. China-aided schools, hospitals, and roads improved the livelihood of Sierra Leonean people. The National Stadium offers the platform for Sierra Leonean people to deliver top sports. The hydro power stations generate electricity for the public. The agriculture technical assistance team helps Sierra Leone increase cereal output and enhance food security. Over the years, the Chinese government has sent more than 300 doctors to Sierra Leone who have treated more than 46,000 hospitalized patients. The Chinese Government has also provided thousands of scholarships for over one thousand Sierra Leonean students to study in China. Under the human resource development program, China has invited over 5100 Sierra Leonean friends from all circles of life to attend short term training courses and other kinds of exchanges in China. In recent years, the Chinese Embassy here has awarded Ambassador’s scholarships or grants to about 200 Sierra Leonean students. All these vividly demonstrate that people are the real beneficiaries of our cooperation’’.
China-Sierra Leone has developed a comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership. Our cooperation is not confined to bilateral spheres and our bilateral cooperation can have wider implications.Based on common or similar historical experiences, our two sides share common or similar views on a wide range of regional and international issues such as the need to strengthen South-South cooperation, promote regional integration, advocate the democratization of international relations, oppose power politics and hegemony, accelerate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and AU Agenda 2063. Therefore, it is easy for our two sides to reach consensus, speak the same language and take coordinated actions on many of the issues involving our common interests. Over the years, our two sides have been doing so consistently.
The Ambassador concluded that the cordial relations between China and Sierra Leone are a result of our joint efforts generation after generation. All circles of life of our two countries including all of us here have contributed to the development of this relationship in different ways. In August 2018, H.E. President Xi Jinping held official talks with H.E. President Julius Maada Bio in Beijing. The two heads of state reached extensive consensus on consolidating our friendship and mutual trust as well as expanding practical cooperation.
United States Amb. Meets with Energy Minister
The United States Ambassador to Sierra Leone ,Ambassador David Reimer, together with experts from MCC and USAIDS, has today engaged the Minister of Energy, Hon.Alhaji Kanja Sesay,at his Pa Demba Road Office.
The meeting was borne out of the need on how the United States can help support sustainable energy generation,distribution and expansion in Sierra Leone as one of major tools of development.
The United States Embassy in Sierra Leone notes with appreciation the frantic efforts of Hon. Alhaji Kanja Sesay to ensure reliable and affordable energy supply.
Several towns and villages have been electrified through the Mini Grid Solar Power with a view to achieving rural renewable energy supply. There’s also work in progress to electrify seven (7) district headquarter towns .
Ambassador Reimer is the newly assigned Ambassador to Sierra Leone, replacing Ambassador Marie Brewa