Power Changes Hands at Njala University

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Njala University has had a new Acting Vice-Chancellor to replace Professor Sankoh Aka Mallam O. who has been in charge since April,2020 as caretaker Principal.

MallamO.this morning hand over to his Lecturer and mentor,ProfessorBaimba who before his appointment Head of the Chemistry Department Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone.

Professor Sankoh has been lauded for introducing wide ranging reforms at Njala University including the stabilization of the finances of the Instituions and for also putting staff welfare, fairness accountability, integrity and transparency as a watchword of his administration.

The Ministry of Technical and Higher Education are pleased of his fourteen months’ tenure at Njala University and has relived him of his caretaker position to allow him to better and effectively conduct the Midterm census slated for September this year.

Mallam O. has assiduously worked to promote the image of Njala University by strengthening the Public Relations wing to propagate whatever good that was happening at Njala University.

He had showed a great passion to change the narrative at his almamater by calling for a shift from the normal ways of doing things.His Administration had advocated for improved student’s hostels and other basic services which they are paying for and hence entitled to.

His long term vision was to leverage private sector support to solve the perennial problems of the University and for this he had engaged the Banks to invest in student’s/staff hostels and accommodation, water and electricity supply, agriculture and the huge retiree liability.

President of the Njala University Retiree Association(NURA) who also doubles as an Associate lecturer at Njala University described Mallam O.as an individual who had changed the face of Njala University to a human one during his fourteen months’ reign.

He and his executive has praised his passion to solve the retiree situation they praised him for opening up an unhindered communication with his executive with a view to solve the retire situation

Minister of Planning Launches DSTI Ecosystem Mapping Report

Sierra Leone’s Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Dr. Francis Kai-Kai has virtually launched the Directorate of Science Technology & Innovation Ecosystem Mapping Report that focuses on strengthening and growing entrepreneurial activity in Sierra Leone.

The Report would seek to provide data to policy makers needed to improve service delivery; providing opportunities for local entrepreneurs and investors to grow and scale business, and also provide resources to producers and creators that promote the development of collaborative networks.

Rokya Ye Dieng, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, in her statement, expressed her delight at the launch of the report, noting that the UNDP together with partners have been working tirelessly to ensure the mapping exercise was done.

She said the ecosystem mapping would provide a holistic understanding of a digital and entrepreneurial environment in the country, identify gaps and provide the required policy direction for actions that would guide future planning in the digital agenda.

The Chief Executive Officer of SMEDA, Sharka Samuel Sannoh, said the data acquired would inform their program design and intervention. He said they would utilize the data to further understand the key challenges facing Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and what solutions they could proffer to make them better.

Team Leader for INVEST SALONE, Chukwu-EmekaChikezie said that they would organize a roundtable to present the ecosystem map to investors and also present promising and invest-ready firms to potential investors, connecting the firms and investors to the pipelines.

In his keynote address, the Minister of Planning, Dr. Kai-Kai the New Direction Government recognizes a clear need for national entrepreneurship and digital tool launch that would enable government, development partners of Sierra Leone to engage in planning that would be informed by credible data.

He said the mapping would be needed for monitoring and evaluation and also inform coordination of the county’s economic development, which would guide and assist in preventing duplication of efforts.

Dr. Kai-Kai noted that the outcome of the Ecosystem mapping presented the country with numerous opportunities in pursuit of a sustainable development for Sierra Leone informed by credible data and as well driven by technology and innovations.

The Minister, then on behalf of His Excellency the President (Retired) Dr. Julius Maada Bio and Government of Sierra Leone symbolically launched the DSTI Ecosystem Mapping Report virtually.

Moyamba District Council Gives Free Surgical Operation for 150 Vulnerable

The Moyamba district Council has donated freesurgical operation for 150 poor and vulnerable people in all 14 Chiefdoms in partnership with the Doctors and Medical staff of the Moyamba Government Hospital.

The ceremony which was formally launched by the Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mrs. Melrose Kirmirty attracted hosts of District stakeholders including paramount chiefs, pupils and medical staff of the Moyamba Government Hospital.

In his opening statement, Chairman, Moyamba District Council, Joseph M. Mbogba said his leadership together with all elected councilors is driven towards actualizing the felt needs of the people of Moyamba District.

He furthered that, health care and wellbeing form an integral component of building a healthy society. Hence; they are as councilhave unanimously agreed to finance surgical operations for 150 poor and vulnerable people from internally generated funds accrued over the past months.

Chairman Joseph M. Mbogba bemoaned the fact that most people have unfortunately succumbed to death out of preventable illnesses sadly because they cannot pay for their medical bills. This he said, was predicated on their resolve to facilitate free surgical operation in tandem with doctors and medical staff of the Moyamba Government Hospital.

 He disclosed among others that this gesture is in line with his manifesto commitments made during the campaigns and expressed profound thanks and appreciation to the President Bio led Government and the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development for their timely support to the Moyamba District Council.

“We will in addition to the free surgical operation provide transportation and feeding free of cost for all 150 beneficiaries throughout their stay in Moyamba’’ he concluded.

Paramount Chief representative, PC FayiaSundifuBrimaSovula IV, who also doubles as Chairman, Council of Paramount Chiefs in Moyamba District and National Secretary General, National Council of Paramount Chiefs described the initiative as plausible adding that they as traditional authorities in Moyamba District are impressed with the hallmarks of the Moyamba District Council noting that they have succeeded in restoring the lost glories and rich history of Moyamba District and promised on behalf of all paramount chiefs of Moyamba District for their continued support at all times.

District Medical Officer, MoyambaDistrict, Dr. James B. Jonjopie said in tandem with universal health coverage, patients and health workers safety, they are under a duty of care to ensure the health of the people.

 He pledged commitments to ensure successful completion of the surgical operation and also commended the Ministry of Health and Sanitation for the support to the Moyamba District Health Management Team.

The surgical operation he went on will cover cases of Hernia, Hydrocele, breast lumps, Lipomas etc.

District Medical Superintendent, Dr. Gregory Foray thanked the leadership of the Moyamba District Council for prioritizing the health of their people noting that amidst the onerous challenge in relation to revenue generation, they have resolved to pioneer 150 surgical operation describing it as a historic milestone.

On his part Dr. Mathew J. Vandy, Director of Hospital and Ambulance Services, Ministry of Health and Sanitation on behalf of their ministry commended the Moyamba District Council for the brave move and cautioned the medical practitioners to show compassion to the patients at all times.

Gerald Foday, District PRO, Civil Society Organizations, Moyamba District, also commended the leadership of Moyamba District Council describing them as a ‘tok n do’ administration adding that notwithstanding the gesture, they will monitor the entire process and however cautioned the councilors present to ensure the careful selection of beneficiaries devoid of patronage.

Director of Local Government, Brima Newman Combey averred that Moyamba District Council is a Centre of attraction and a model of development and growth attributing reasons why they  are at the heart of Government for their people centred and development oriented acumen.

In her keynote address, Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mrs. Melrose Kirmirty said since they came to power against the odds, Moyamba District can now boast of feasible developments and infrastructure ranging from the ongoing road construction, rural electrification, free education, awards of pin codes to  nurses ,boost to  the healthcare attributing it to the manners of the New Direction under the reign of President Bio.

She said the model of development by the Moyamba District Council from own source revenue is admirable and will in her words form the new normal for all local councils in Sierra Leone.

Mrs.Kirmirty described local councils as bedrocks to development aligned with the vision of President Julius Maada Bio.

“ It’s remarkable to say the least that Moyamba District Council can out of own source revenue pioneer free surgical operation for 150 poor and vulnerable people, Construct 4 quarters with 24 room capacity for core council staff, secure 250 acres of land for mechanized rice farming… this is awesome “ she opined.

She urged the people of Moyamba  District to support the council and pledged her ministry’s unflinching support  towards the realization and actualization of all projects undertaken by the Moyamba District Council under the reign of Chairman, Joseph M. Mbogba.

Statements by Mr. Emmanuel Alie and Chairman, Moyamba District Descendant Association, Simeon Jonjo together with the launch of the 150 free surgical operation, unveiling of council staff quarters and tour to the farm site in Kamajei Chiefdom, climaxed the ceremony.

SierraLeoneApplauded

A mission from the United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) Regional Service Centre for Africa, (RSCA), led by its Governance and Peace Building Coordinator, Dr. Roselyn Akombe, has met Sierra Leone’s Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Dr. Francis Kai-Kai to commend Sierra Leone for promoting peaceful and inclusive societies in support of National Development Priorities.

The engagement was to also discuss UNDP’s plans to review its existing Governance Portfolio, and program management architecture in ensuring effectiveness, efficiency, and overall alignment with emerging issues in the country, and UNDP’s new governance offer.

In her statement, Dr. Akombe, said the mission, during its week-long stay, would be working closely with key government institutions; Development Partners, and Civil Society Organizations to assess and restructure their Governance Portfolio that would be fit-for-purpose and within the overall sphere of ‘Leaving No-One Behind’.

She thanked the President Julius Maada Bio-led Government for being a good example investing in sustainable peace and also promoting peaceful and inclusive societies in support of National Development Priorities. Dr. Akombe continued to commend the government’s effort in prioritizing Human Capital Development, as a cornerstone in advancing National Development.

The Minister, on his part, welcomed the Team to Sierra Leone, expressing his appreciation to the UNDP for their immense support to the President’s New Direction Agenda. He said the UNDP continues to demonstrate their commitment to supporting Sierra Leone’s Governance landscape in Development, which has significantly improved under the New Direction Government.

Minister Kai-Kai said the Government was determined to stay focused on the Medium-Term National Development Plan (MTNDP) 2019-2023, with the overarching aim of achieving the objectives of the plan, which according to him, was also driven by Human Capital Development.

“This plan is firmly guided by the President’s focus on Human Capital Development dominated by Education, Health and Food Security. These sectors have been very constant and would stay constant in terms of moving the Agenda forward”.

The mission would be further expected to consult with key development partners and civil society organizations to inform their final program portfolio offer.

 The Governance cluster strategy sets the agenda for UNDP’s intervention in Sierra Leone for the period 2020-2023. The goal of the strategy is to support the achievement of an effective, transparent, accountable, inclusive and participatory governance guided by the rule of law for enhanced service delivery.

Alleged Land Fraudster Remanded

By FeimaSesay

SaffiatuKamara on Wednesday 30th June 2021 testifies against Mohamed Kutubu who was on Wednesday 30th June 2021 arraigned before Magistrate SahrKekura at the Freetown Magistrate Court No. 1 in the on-going preliminary investigation into allegations of fraud.

According to the indictment, the accused Mohamed Kutubu on diverse dates between March and April 2021, at Jui and SaniAbacha Street in Freetown, obtained from SaffiatuKamara the sum of eleven million, five hundred thousand Leones (Le11,500,000) by fraud other than by false pretences.

Prosecution witness and victim SaffiatuKamara, a petty trader and a resident of Elbanks Street in Freetown recognized the accused person in the dock, whom she came to know through her mother-in-law.

He recalled between March and April 2020. She said that on the 17th March 2020 the accused met her and later informed herthat he is in possession of two town lot of land for sale at Jui.

“I expressed interest over the plot of land, but I told him I willgoing to discuss the issue with my husband. Before long, me, my husband, Sidique Sheriff, together with my mother-in-law and the accused visited the site,” she explained.

She added that the accused identified the plot of land, adding that she gave five million Leones to the accused. 

At this stage Magistrate SahrKekura stopped the proceedings and asked the prosecution to continue on the next adjourned date, for according to him, the prosecution has not properly interviewed the witness.

Defense counsel requested for bail on behalf of his client. He noted that bail is an unfettered discretion of the Magistrate. He therefore urged the Magistrate to exercise that discretion to his client.

He canvassed his bail plea on Section 79 of the Criminal Procedure Act. He also cited Rule 2 and 3 of the Bail Regulation which provides that in this circumstance, if the prosecution wishes to object to bail must do so through an affidavit of support.

However, prosecuting counsel disclosed that they had earlier served and affidavit which was inside the court file. But defense counsel stood up and discredits the said affidavit.

Magistrate SahrKekura noted that the accused had appeared before him severally in respect of such matter; he therefore refused bail and adjourned the matter to the 7th July 2021.

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