Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Dr. Priscilla Schwartz has showcased the work of the Legal Aid Board at the side event at the UN Secretariat in New York on Monday, 15 July 2019.
Dr. Schwartz said the Board has been one of the key institutions in implementing SD Goal 16. She underlined the remarkable successes of the Board in providing justice services to people especially those in remote communities that have little access to the Criminal Justice System. She noted that 215,000 people including non-Sierra Leoneans have benefitted from the Scheme from its inception in May 2015 to December 2018.
A five minutes video showcasing the work of the Board and the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education was also shown at the side event. The video shows the work of the Board in Pujehun District where a lot has been achieved by Paralegal Kakpama Lansana in promoting peaceful coexistence through mediation, provision of advice and legal assistance to those accessing both the formal and informal justice system and vigorously monitoring the police and the informal courts to ensure they carry out their mandates in a manner consistent with the law and also ensure rights are respected.
Carlton-Hanciles hailed the side event as a huge success for the Legal Aid Board. ‘People out here know a lot more about the Board than some had thought,’ she said, adding ‘People are following us on social media and are very pleased with what we are doing. Even our work with the entertainment industry to organized a Peace and Human Rights Festival in November, to build an inclusive society, is being followed closely.’
The Attorney General, Chairperson of the Legal Aid Board, Justice Miatta Samba and the Executive Director of the Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles are part of Sierra Leone’s delegation to the UN High Level Political Forum (HLPF) where the country will be presenting the Voluntary National Review (VNR) report on the progress in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).