By Amin Kef (Ranger)
Vice President Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh has pledged an upturn in the conditions of service for the recently elected Councillors of both the Freetown City Council and Waterloo District Council. Speaking on behalf of the Government of Sierra Leone, Dr. Jalloh extended the promise of heightened resource allocation to these Council representatives, recognizing the integral role they play in bolstering revenue collection.
During the inauguration ceremony for the freshly elected Mayor, Chairman, and Councillors of the Western Area Councils, Vice President Jalloh emphasized the pivotal status of these Councillors as paramount figures within their local communities. He underlined their significance as the principal politicians at the grassroots level.
Dr. Jalloh urged the elected officials to uphold accountability and transparency in their official responsibilities, underscoring how these values are pivotal to realizing the goals laid out in President Bio’s second term five-point manifesto.
Stressing the importance of exemplary transparency, the Vice President expressed his aspiration for these Councils to adhere to transparency mandates throughout their five-year tenure. Moreover, he championed the imperative of diligent revenue mobilization strategies within the councils.
Dr. Jalloh encouraged the newly elected representatives to work cohesively, transcending political affiliations to fulfill common objectives, including communal road maintenance. He also advised them to establish robust relationships with market women and extend respect and support to administrative staff in order to achieve the Councils’ objectives.
Moreover, Vice President Jalloh called for collaborative efforts between the Councillors and relevant line Ministries such as Planning and Economic Development, Health, Lands and Energy.
During his speech, Dr. Jalloh highlighted the accomplishments of President Bio’s first term New Direction Government, spanning education, health, agriculture, electricity, road infrastructure, and other areas.
Notably, this inauguration ceremony marked a historic moment, as it saw a notable representation of female Councillors – a significant milestone since the reintroduction of local councils in Sierra Leone. Vice President Jalloh commended President Bio’s commitment to women’s empowerment and conveyed his congratulations on behalf of President Julius Maada Bio.
In concurrence, Minister of Local Government, Amb Tamba Lamina, accentuated the pivotal role of service delivery within the Councils. He explained the inclusion of Tribal and Village Heads in Council matters as per the revised Local Government Act and Decentralization Policy, indicating their input in community problem-solving, though without voting rights.
Amb. Lamina urged the Councillors to unite their efforts to ensure developmental progress within their respective jurisdictions.