Mayor Aki-Sawyerr Participates in UN International Migration Review Forum (“IMRF”)

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In my capacity as a member of the MMC Leadership Board, C40 Cities Vice Chairperson, founding member of the C40-MMC Global Mayors Task Force on Climate and Migration and co-lead of the Africa-Europe Mayor’s Dialogue, I am in New York participating in the  IMRF.

Yesterday morning I started the day meeting with the MMC team to engage on the priorities of the organization and expectations for the deliberations over the next three days. One of our most significant successes to date is the establishment of the Global Cities Fund, a grant making body that provides funding for city interventions. We are proud that Freetown was among the first grantees in December 2020; this funding enabled us to provide business training, 40 waste management tricycles and related equipment to 240 young people in our city!! This job creation intervention targets rural migrants and increases waste collection capacity. It is truly a lives changing #TransformFreetown intervention!

I also had the privilege yesterday of meeting with Madame Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. I briefed her about increasing rural-urban migration into Freetown and how the absence of development controls (land use planning and building controls) has exasperated the challenges of migration into the city.

I then joined partners, some of whom have already supported our city’s #TransformFreetown agenda, for a reception and private conversation. The reception was an opportunity to share the #TransformFreetown journey, focusing on the successes and areas where more support is needed. Guests at the reception included the German Ambassador to the United Nations, representatives from ODI, Avenue Capital and the Atlantic Council.

I am pleased to continue to transparently promote Freetown internationally and to identify opportunities to finance more #TransformFreetown investment interventions in our city

VP Juldeh Jalloh addresses high level international education meeting

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The Vice President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh, in his keynote address today Thursday 18th May, 2022 welcomed distinguished guests from various countries highlighted the progress the country has made to support girls education through Transformative policies to ensure Gender Equality in and Through Education.

Standing in for His Excellency President Dr. Julius Maada Bio, who he referred to as the ‘Champion of Girls’ Education,’ the Vice President said it was great pride and honour that the Government and people of Sierra Leone were hosting the event which, he said, was close to our hearts.

According to VP Juldeh Jalloh, education must be the centrepiece of any Government’s investment in its people in addressing barriers to equality, adding that no society can grow where the population is plagued by gender barriers.

It is against this backdrop that the Vice President emphasized that the Government has a deep-seated conviction to promote and enhance female empowerment to achieve equality. This conviction, the erudite Vice President said, is driven by policies, such as the setting up of a separate Ministry of Basic and Senior School Education (MBSSE) with the focus and emphasis on girls’ education, employment of 8000 more female teachers, more girls in basic education than boys, 22 percent of the budget going to education.

The indefatigable Vice President concluded by thanking the participants and co-organizers as well as  development partners. The VP wrapped up his statement in immaculate French as a large number of the participants are Francophones. Merci Bien.

Njala University Discovers Anthrax Outbreak in Port Loko

Professor Roland Suluku, Animal Science Professor at Njala University has attributed the discovery of the recent anthrax outbreak in the country to the Department of Animal Science, School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, Njala University.

He disclosed that a few weeks back his team responded to calls from cattle rearers/farmers in Port Loko that animals are dying. This according to him necessitated the dispatch of a team from the school to the field.

The team arrived and took samples of the dead and living animals. These samples were later tested at the Level 3 Chinese Public Health Laboratory at Wilberforce, Freetown, and later diagnosed with anthrax, a zoonotic disease that affects both animals and humans.

The leadership of the University, led by the Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Bashiru Mohamed Koroma, and the management of the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences led by the Dean and School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, Professor Mohamed Alieu Bah held a series of meetings with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry leading to the nationwide announcement of the Outbreak in the last forty-eight (48) hours.

The Ministries of Health and Sanitation and Agriculture have also conducted similar tests and confirmed the outbreak.

Professor Roland Suluku, the Principal Lead investigator of the One-Health Serology and Molecular Laboratory at Njala University and Head of the Animal Science Department, School of Agriculture and Food Sciences says he is leading a team to the epicentre of the disease to trace the epidemiology of the outbreak.

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