New Deputy Ministers and Commissioners of Local Government Service Commission Subscribe to Oath of Office at State House

Newly approved Deputy Ministers of Finance and Health and Sanitation and Commissioners of the Local Government Service Commission have subscribed to the Oath of Office before His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio during a short ceremony in Freetown.

Mr Sheku Ahmed Fantamadi Bangura was sworn in as Deputy Minister II at the Ministry of Finance and Dr Amara Jambai as Deputy Minister II at the Ministry of Health and Sanitation. Donald Augustus Ngegba is the Chairman and Mrs NyillaOathman, Madam Janet Jabati, Mrs Sia Alice Bockarie Torto and Mr Jacob E. Quee are now Commissioners of the Local Government Service Commission.

The commission was established in 2004 with the responsibility of providing regulatory, performance management and management functions to the system decentralised government as provided for in section 38 (1) of the Local Government Act of 2004.

In his statement, President Bio congratulated the new officials, saying that they were meticulously chosen because they would bring value to the state. He said the task ahead was an extremely difficult one and noted that his government had done quite a lot to correct the wrongs of the past. He stated that his government was committed to delivering for the people and urged them to make the necessary sacrifice.

Deputy Finance Minister II said that they were thankful to God for His divine hand in the leadership of President Bio and for making their appointments possible. He noted that the government had focused, in the last twenty months, on designing the roadmap for implementation of strategic pieces of President Bio’s vision, which were now solidly in place.

Mr Bangura assured that they would unreservedly commit to deploying and exerting to the fullest, their capabilities, experience, networks and unrelenting efforts to foster through teamwork to ensure effective delivery of the President’s vision as espoused in the New Direction Agenda and the National Development Plan.

On their part, the new Chairman, Local Government Service Commission expressed sincere appreciation to the President for appointing them to serve in his government.

He said that the Local Government was key to the delivery of services in the nation and assured that they were determined to serve the country with loyalty an commitment.

Sierra Leone: My humble words for the Sierra Leone Peoples Party

Dear brother SLPP

It is over a year since the family gave you responsibility to take care of the household in the hope that the wheels of development will take another positive turn for everyone in the family and I am optimistic you are working hard to make that possible.

It is also my hope that everyone will support you in fighting corruption, be tolerant to others with different views and political affiliations and put the family first in our differing views about the development in the family.

President Julius Maada Bio: Sierra Leoneans want answers to the high standard of living

Unfortunately, developing trends are indicating an unstable progress in the family’s drive for sustainable development, cohesion and peace. Our story has always been a challenging one and is still being the same sad story with little to cheer about, but I believe we could change the narrative to that of better affordable public health care, standard educational institutions, enabling market and job opportunities, effective accountability and transparency of all public institutions, and adherence to the democratic tenets, among others.

I could sense your frustration in your determination to make things work, but I also assume, as it has often been the case with brother APC, some of the men and women you rely on to row the boat seems preoccupied with party politics and time-wasting propaganda instead of focusing on governance. We have you now at the helm of the family and it is my hope that you break the vicious cycle of politics that has made us one of the poorest families.

The broken system has caused an atmosphere of endemic corruption, violations, and the blatant disregard of the rule of law. Today, our young aren’t proud about the family because of the failure of the leaders to own to their responsibility – too much corruption in the public service sector.

Brother SLPP, you need everyone onboard to make your dream a reality. Today people are crying and blaming you for the high cost of living and I do believe you are also not please about the development and might have summoned meetings of few friends of yours to explain the reason for the hardship ‘Gron dry’ problem.

I also believe you would want to wake up in the morning and see everyone in the family happy, such were the expectations of your predecessor; but the dreams are farfetched from the reality because of the endemic hurdles caused by political interference in the public service sector. I could understand your frustration, especially having always to go public to clarify sensitive statements by your children. I also could understand why they have so much energy; but they need to slow down and be accountable when making public statements.

Your promise has always been to do the right thing for the family and I still hope you will do right, now that you are responsible for the food and how it is shared in the house. You have the power to direct the processes of governance, protect and uphold democratic principles, protect the family and ensure peaceful coexistence. Yet the songs are still sad and the children and women are crying.

But I am optimistic the story will be better if all of us see beyond political party lines, tribe, and region and work toward the single goal of making the family a better place. You could break the cycle by being the big brother of every one by engaging the various stakeholders from all walks of life, regions and tribes, for the common goal of working together for better healthcare, standard education, and jobs opportunities.

I am not the only one who believes you could do it. Everyone in the family believes in you and voted you into office for a better Sierra Leone.

Yours Sincerely

 Alpha B. Kamara

IMF Staff Concludes Visit to Lesotho

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission, led by Mr. Joseph Thornton, visited Maseru from August 23 to September 5, 2018 to discuss the authorities’ economic and financial program and possible financial support by the IMF.

  • Lesotho has been experiencing an economic shock resulting from a decline in revenues from the Southern African Customs Union (SACU).
  • The authorities and the mission made significant progress in their discussions on policies that could be supported by the IMF under a financial arrangement.


Finance Minister Majoro

The authorities and the mission had productive discussions on policies that could be supported by the IMF under a financial arrangement. The program would aim to support growth and employment, and buttress reserves by restoring fiscal sustainability and strengthening public financial management, while ensuring the protection of the most vulnerable.

Mr. Thornton made the following statement at the end of the visit:

“Lesotho has been experiencing an economic shock resulting from a decline in revenues from the Southern African Customs Union (SACU). Public expenditures increased rapidly while SACU revenues were buoyant but have not been reined in as SACU revenues fell after 2015, despite the lack of growth in other revenues sources. The resulting fiscal and external imbalances, if not addressed promptly, would put pressure on international reserves and result in the build-up of government payment arrears.

“The mission discussed with the authorities a number of options for containing the deficit to a level that can be fully financed. The mission noted that the adjustment should be focused on expenditure measures, including efforts to address the public sector wage bill, which is one of the largest in the world compared to the size of the economy, while making efforts to ensure that the most vulnerable are protected. The mission also discussed other possible areas for savings, including on government travel, foreign embassies, and procurement. Discussions also considered measures to modernize tax policy and improve the revenue system. The mission noted the need to address long-standing PFM issues to ensure the provision of reliable fiscal data and ensure sound use of public resources.

“The mission noted the need to accelerate structural reforms to support growth and enhance job creation. It welcomed efforts to review the licensing regime to reduce red tape, modernize the legal framework governing credit, and review the role of the government in the economy.

“Significant progress was made during the visit, and discussions will continue in the coming weeks. If agreement is reached on policy measures in support of the reform program, an arrangement to support Lesotho’s economic program could be proposed for the IMF Executive Board’s consideration.”

The IMF team met with Finance Minister Majoro, Minister of the Public Service Molapo, Governor of the Central Bank Matlanyane and other senior officials. The team also met with representatives of the diplomatic community, private sector, civil society, and multilateral development partners. The team thanks the authorities for their hospitality and constructive discussions.