By Brima Sannoh
The Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Dr. Francis Kai-Kai has launched the Sierra Leone Integrated Household Survey (SLIHS) 2018 Report on Monday October 29th, 2019 at the Radisson Blu Hotel at Aberdeen in Freetown. The program was organised by Statistics Sierra Leone in collaboration with the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, development partners including the World Bank, IMF and the African development Bank amongst others.
Launching the document, Dr. Francis Kai-Kai said the SLIHS 2018 Report was a critical milestone in the generation of relevant statistics for national development. He said Statistics-SL has provided another opportunity for evidence-based policy and decision making through a credible data base.
The Minister said the report, which is based on the most essential information collected about the living standards of all segments of the population, should serve as a basis on which to make policies and guidelines for socio-economic development of the poverty reduction strategies of the country, like the Medium Term National Development Plan (MTNDP 2019-2023).
“I am particularly proud of this achievement because the SLIHS 2018 Report will provide a natural baseline to monitor implementation of the MTNDP (2019-2023). It will provide the most reliable poverty profile for Sierra Leone using the new World Bank poverty line of $1.90 per day and assist the Government in determining the socio-economic impact of key policies”, he said.
Dr. Kai-Kai noted that the development of such a comprehensive document usually takes time and involves a lot of collaboration among stakeholders, and thanked all those in divers ways who contributed to the production of the document.
He maintained that, as a Government they know it is important not to continue on the same trajectory in the last couple of years, but rather they were truly committed to the global 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and to the principle of “leaving no one behind”, under the leadership of President Julius Maada Bio.
The Statistician General, Prof. Osman Sankoh described the launch of the report as very important and commended his Team and other development partners for the day to day leadership and guardian of the work. He said that measurement of households and their living standards was a critical statistical function as it will help government and other policy makers make the right decisions for the right set of people depending on their needs
World Bank Advisor on Statistics, Elizabeth Forster, during her presentation, described the report as significant in supporting the development objectives of the Government. She noted that the data will better inform Ministries, Agencies and Departments in addressing the most relevant and significant poverty issues facing the country, adding that it was built in conscientious and use of objectives and activities.
A key highlight of the ceremony included a presentation from the head of Agricultural Statistics, Mohamed Kamara on the key findings of the report. Other dignitaries in attendance included the Minister of Internal Affairs, Minister of Transport and Aviation, Minister of Trade, Minister of Sports and the Deputy Minister of Defence among many others. The ceremony was chaired by the Chairman of the Statistics Council, Moses Williams.