John Baimba Sesay
Collectively as a nation, a lot of gains we have made. I have written extensively on how the present administration has worked assiduously in turning things round in a country that had witnessed a brutal war which left behind a fractured infrastructure with apparently broken hopes.
The outbreak of ebola in the sub-region also left behind another sad chapter in our history. But with a resilient people, with an astute national leadership provided at the highest level, we have been able to come this far in our quest for development both political and socio-economic.
By February this year, I submitted, close to a decade, the government has ensured the creation of effective institutional frameworks that have aided the effective implementation of government programmes and activities. This is especially so in line with the development trajectory. Added to the physical and human infrastructure foundations this administration has built, we also have witnessed heightened expenditure profile especially in relations to capital expenditure.
The surge in revenue generation and mobilization by the revenue collecting body-NRA, for instance, has come as a result of the enabling environment that institution has continuously got from government, through the ministry of finance.
We have had huge transformation in our investment climate. The country’s Income Tax Act and the multiple Finance Acts enacted since 2010 contain various incentives that encourage private sector investments and promote the inflow of foreign capital into the country. Since 2008, when government enacted the most aggressive anti-corruption legislation in Africa, we have made significant strides in promoting integrity and fighting widespread corruption.
We today are playing a leading role on global matters. Just this month, the African Union reportedly gave President Koroma “full marks for his outstanding role as major player in the UN Security Council Reform negotiations.”
By endorsing the report with acclaim, writes Rev. Kabs Kanu, “the AU leaders were expressing profound confidence in the diplomatic capabilities of C-10 President Koroma, as well as giving full marks to the President for his leadership role in successfully steering C-10, which is a committee mandated to canvass, promote and propagate the Common African Position on the UN Security Council Reform Negotiations.”
Sierra Leone heads to other general elections, slated for March, 2018. Our nation’s history would be meaningless without reference to the governance period of President Ernest Bai Koroma and how, during his tenure, the threshold for leadership was redefined and the bar lifted so high.
Working hard to succeed him would mean a duty bound to not water down the gains we have made so far! This is very crucial. This is more so for the ruling party- the APC, slated to announce a presidential candidate in less than two months. This is a crucial period.
We should work towards sustaining the momentum, nourish the gains and above all, protect those legacies the president will be leaving. It is but also necessary to look at where the party was prior to 2007 and where it is today and then appreciate the efforts the current leadership has made in taking that political institution to its present status.
We have got successes to point at as a government. However, failure to work collectively as a family at the political level will see those successes been butchered by any other government, but APC coming to power.
The APC is a national institution that cuts across regional, tribal and religious lines. We should also not ignore this as we move towards September. The core desire should be about winning! And with what has been achieved so far, coupled with the party moving as a united force, there sure will be moments when the nation will see a reignited hope!