By James Samba
In a collaborative manner, Statistics SL represented by its Statistician General, Prof. Osman Sankoh (Mallam O), Northern Region Council Member, Alhaji Yillah, Director of National Statistical System, Francis Tommy and Director of Communication and Public Relations, Samuel Ansumana have participated and supported the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development (MoPED) in a two day workshop on Decentralization Ownership of Sierra Leone’s Medium Term Development Plan For Effective Implementation and Results at the Kambia District Council Hall from 17th-18th October, 2019.
In his keynote address, Vice President Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh who opened the workshop and handed over the medium term plan to the Paramount Chiefs urged them and their people to identify key priority development areas for the furtherance of the district.
He intimated all present that Kambia is one of 6 identified districts in which Government intends to strengthen access to sustainable energy within the shortest possible time. He alluded the Government’s national development plan to that of a tailor who will only design a dress based on what is requested. He therefore urged the people to make their requests very clearly so that Government’s intervention can be tailor-made to it.
The Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Alpha Timbo expressed satisfaction that Kambia chose education as a key need especially considering the poor performance by the district in public exams this year. He furthered that his Ministry delivered all the free quality education materials including the books whilst urging parents and other stakeholders to handle it with care for the benefit of the district.
The Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Dr Francis Kaikai urged the people of the district to seize the opportunity and ensure that their most important needs are prioritized.
The Minister of Political and Public Affairs, Foday Yumkella,a son of Kambia, thanked the Government for identifying Kambia as a key priority district and urged his people not to be left behind in the Government’s development strides .
Day 1 ended with discussions and recommendations by participants who were divided into policy clusters, one of which Stats SL and NaMED facilitated whilst day 2 witnessed presentations of group work in which the key district development priorities were identified and tabled for necessary Government action.
At the end of the workshop, the people of Kambia district identified 5 key priorities namely: Education, Energy, Health, Agriculture and Infrastructure.
The handing over of those priorities to the Minister of Planning and Economic Development climaxed the workshop.