Drizilik, Dalas to Perform in 1st AfriCaribbean Festival

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Two of Sierra Leone’s finest artists, Drizilik and Dallas Bantan will be performing live at the AfriCaribbean Festival to be hosted for the very first time in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

The first AfriCaribbean music festival is a promotional partnership with Miami carnival, a non-profit organization named Miami- Broward.

The Miami Carnival is seemingly dedicated to bring a safe family festival in South Florida and outlying areas to foster community pride, civic involvement and providing critical opportunities to the Caribbean people in South Florida with an aim of sharing the Caribbean culture.

It was established also to promote cultural exchange and building an economic cooperation in the multi-ethnic and multi-cultural environment of South Florida.

With such a history, the AfriCaribbean festival is designed to take such cultural values to Africa with a first stop in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

This will be an ultimate festival event showcasing Sierra Leonean music (Gumbe), African Music (Afro-beat) and Caribbean music (Soca Calypso) within a six days long festival of arts, and a lot of entertainment bounties lined up for your December festivities.

It is indeed a bold step in the creative industry as it is believed to bring together Africans, Caribbeans, African Americans, Afro Latinos and Afro-Asians through Music, arts, culture and ancestry.

AfriCaribbean Festival is expected to be a platform to celebrate, showcase heritage, promote local and international talents through such an experience that will culminate in the presentation and unveiling of a set of commemorative artworks from the district of Maryland and Virginia arts community to the residents of the city of Freetown bringing together the African and Carribbean Culture in one unique location in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

Visitors are expected from around the world to participate in the six days long festival.

Drizilik and Dalas Bantan from Sierra Leone are amongst the list of international artists to perform during the festival to be held on the 28th of December 2022 to the 2nd of January 2023.

Sierra Leoneans should expect a unique and culturally diverse experience that has never happened in any other African country.

The festival is proudly powered by Eminence Africa Entertainment Sierra Leone’s leading event professionals.

Alleged Murder in Kambia…

Exhibit Clerk Tenders Sticks as Evidence In Court

By Feima Sesay

Detective Police Sergeant Issa Kamara on Monday 29 August 2022 tendered a bunch of sticks in the alleged murder of one Amidu Kargbo of Kambia Town involving four accused persons.

The accused persons Abubakar Suleiman Kamara, Dora Samuella Kamara, Benjamin Mohamed Lamin Kamara and Imatu Suleiman Kamara were arraigned before magistrate Mark Ngegba of Pademba road court No1 on two counts charges of conspiracy and murder contrary to law.

According to the particulars of offences for counts one police alleged that all the accused persons on Tuesday 5 July 2022 at No 4 Mamah Lane Kambia 2 in the Magbema chiefdom North-West judicial district Northern Province conspired together with other persons unknown to murder Amidu Kargbo.

Whiles counts two added that the said accused persons on the same date and place murdered Amidu Kargbo.

Prosecution Witness No 4 Detective Sergeant 8576 Issa Kamara led in evidence by ASP Christina Davis Cole Esq said he is an exhibits clerk attached to the Exhibit Office CID HQ in Freetown.

He recalled 18 July 2022, adding that, on that day he was on duty when Detective Inspector Makieu D.A attached to Homicide Syndicate handed over to him a bunch of sticks which were registered in the court exhibit book and which had since been in police custody.

The said exhibits were produced and tendered in court to form part of prosecution case.

Magistrate Ngegba adjourned the matter to 30th August 2022.

Koinadugu Embraces National Population Policy

The Ministry of Planning and Economic Development (MoPED), with support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), on Friday 26th August 2022 presented the Sierra Leone National Population Policy document to various stakeholders in Wara Wara Yagala Chiefdom, Koinadugu District at the well-attended ceremony at the Koinadugu District Council Hall in Kabala at which event it was underscored that the policy encompasses inclusive governance and radical inclusion.

In December last year, similar events were held in Kenema, Makeni and Bo Cities respectively at which events it was revealed that there are eight objectives and 21 indicators in the policy, that 75% of the population is made up of youths, that 46% of the population is uneducated and that there is a big gap between school going boys and girls.

All the stakeholders, including the representative of the Paramount Chief of Wara Wara Yagala Chiefdom, Gbawuru II Mansaray and the chairman of the Koinadugu District Council, Mr. Yembeh Mansaray pledged their unflinching support to the policy but underscored that if youths are not catered for they would become armed robbers, prostitutes and seek greener pastures abroad.

They went on to point out that the District is dynamic, that there are various tribes peacefully cohabiting in the District and described Koinadugu District as the land of milk and honey, promised that they would widely disseminate the policy for the benefit of the District, appealed to participants to be attentive and ask questions and promised to join government to implement the policy.  

They also highlighted the challenging topography of the District and its high maternal mortality rate

In his PowerPoint presentation, keynote address and officially handing over the policy document to stakeholders in Koinadugu District, the Director of Performance Management and Planning in the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development (MoPED), Dr. Robert Moikowa said the Midterm Census is to correct the anomalies of the previous one for accurate allocation of resources depending on the population of each district.

Dr. Moikowa apologized that due to the Covid outbreak in the country in 2018, government was late to popularize the policy, enlightened that the National Population Policy (NPP) was the first document launched by the SLPP government in 2018 to ensure that nobody is left behind citing the radical inclusion of all in the education sector, women’s empowerment, underscored that the policy is the roadmap that would be handed over to the people for ownership and appealed to them to monitor the process for sustainability.

According to Dr. Robert Moikowa, Sierra Leone pledged commitment at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) to among others provide family planning, promote the use of contraceptives to manage the birth rate, reduce maternal and infant mortality, end child marriage as well as improve the lives of youths and appealed to all to widely disseminate the policy in their respective communities.

He further articulated that if the population is effectively managed, government would be able to provide basic services for the people and in the process increase life expectancy, stressed the need for decentralization of service delivery, that the policy prioritizes reproductive health and rights and that government wants to manage the population to harness the demographic dividends as majority of the population is made up of youths.

He continued that the policy is forward looking, all-encompassing and is based on credible data, disclosed that government plans to train and employ 1,000 midwives and health workers, reduce gender-based violence and harmful traditional practices in addition to prohibiting and criminalizing child marriage, disclosed that the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has a crucial role to play in the policy citing the progress government has made to empower women, pledged that UNFPA would continue to support government due to its strong commitments to accelerate the ICPDs as well as budgetary support to the Ministry of Health and Sanitation to reduce maternal and infant mortality in the country.

He furthered that they are now practicalzing the well-prepared policy, that UNFPA is supporting government to achieve the Mid-Term National Development Plan in addition to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and working to address key issues in the policy.

The representative of the Paramount Chief, Mr. Yembeh Marah revealed that they are the custodians of government policies, that chiefdoms account for three fourth of the country, that the event is very important and that implementation of the policy is now at their doorsteps.

Other stakeholders reiterated the need for the Mid-Term Census for proper planning, appealed to all for their support and effective dissemination of the policy, pledged their unflinching support to the policy and assured the people that their inputs would be taken onboard and presented to government and partners.

In his brief statement, Mr. Gabriel Dumbuya of the National Population Secretariat, MoPED disclosed that the policy was developed in 2018 and launched by the Vice President of Sierra Leone in 2019 reiterating that the policy is very important for the country, underscored the need to manage the country’s population with the available resources so as to improve the lives of the people, especially women and children and affirmed that the Mid-Term Census generated credible data.

All the stakeholders reiterated that the importance of the Mid-Term Census cannot be overstated for proper planning, promised to sensitize their subjects on the policy adding that adult literacy would help to reduce the high illiterate rate in the country and pledged their respective commitment to the policy.

Other dignitaries who made statements included representatives of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), the security sector, women and youth leaders, nurses, religious leaders, teachers, the physically challenged and pupils.

The question and answer session and distribution of the policy climaxed the highly interactive event.

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