By Alfred Fornah
Freetown, 9 Nov 2016: The Director and some Senior Staff Members of the Office of DiasporaAffairs (ODA) have recently received an Honorary Award from Members of the Sierra LeoneCentral Union in the Netherlands.ODA Director, Mr Kallay Musa Conteh (Center) receiving the award from SLCUThe Sierra Leone Central Union Holland (SLCU) is a parent organization of Sierra LeoneanDiaspora organizations in the Netherlands, whose ultimate aim is to bring Sierra Leoneanstogether for the benefit of Sierra Leone.According to the Chairman of the Sierra Leone Central Union, Abubakarr Bangura the awardwas given to ODA for making great strides in coordinating and harnessing the diaspora towardsthe development of the country. ‘’ Last year we signed MoU with ODA, and they have beenworking accordingly towards that direction’’ Mr. Bangura pointed out.
Receiving the award, the Director of the ODA, Mr Kallay Musa Conteh expressed delight for theaward. ‘’I am dedicating this award to all the staff of ODA for their relentless effort to effectivelyimplementing the diaspora concept’’ said ODA Director. He promised that they are going to domore in promoting diaspora activities towards the development of the country.Meanwhile, one of the exciting and laudable initiatives of President Ernest Bai Koroma when heassumed leadership of Sierra Leone in 2007 was to establish the Office of Diaspora Affairs(ODA),The ODA aimed at laying the foundation for a productive and mutually beneficial partnershipbetween the government of Sierra Leone and the Sierra Leone Diaspora.The specific goals of the ODA including reversing the nation’s brain drain to brain gain; byidentifying Sierra Leone professionals in the diaspora and encouraging them to come home andcontribute to nation building, encouraging diaspora investment; by creating a suitableenvironment for investments, and also work towards formalizing diaspora remittances . By andlarge, the Office of Diaspora Affairs has been making great progress in the execution of itsmandates.
ODA Director, Mr Kallay Musa Conteh (Center) receiving the award from SLCU