By ODA Communication Unit
As the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) special Pre-Summit came to a successful conclusion on the 26th August 2016 in Nairobi Kenya, the Continental APRM Delegation has commended the Government of Sierra Leone for making great strides in implementing the APRM objectives that strive towards good governance.
Photo: APRM Sierra Leone Delegation
This commendation was made during the Bilateral Meeting between Sierra Leone and Liberia. Commenting on Sierra Leone achievements on the APRM initiative, the lead panellist of the APRM Panel of Eminent Persons, Fatuma Ndangiza of Rwanda described Sierra Leone as an example of continental best practice in its bid to effectively implement good governance initiatives and that Liberia, which is now preparing for its first peer review could learn a lot from Sierra Leone.
The APRM Special Summit which started on 21st August 2016 attracted National Advisors to Heads of States, APRM Panel of Eminent persons, Members of Civil Society groups, the Media, Government Ministers and also other Heads of Government institutions of Member States of the African Peer Review Mechanism. This Pre-Summit is being held against the background of revitalization of the APRM as a tool for strengthening governance in Africa. The APRM is an innovative and unprecedented governance tool for promoting good governance, and has contributed immensely in transforming the African Continent.
Also the revitalization process has full support and backing of the chairperson of the APRM Forum, H.E Hon. Uhuru Kenyatta; President of the Republic of Kenya.
Meanwhile, Sierra Leone was represented by the Hon. Minister of Political and Public Affairs, Madam Nanette Thomas who led a delegation of five including some members of the reconstituted Sierra Leone National Governing Council (NGC), and also the Executive Chairman of APRM, Professor Osman Gbla. However, the Sierra Leone delegation during the summit made significant contributions to the discussions during the summit.
In her statement during the main session of the summit on Tuesday 23rd August, the Hon Minister of Political and Public Affairs, Madam Nanette Thomas elaborated on the country’s implementation of good governance policies, human rights practices; such as: the increased participation of women in Sierra Leone governance, engaging young people and persons with disabilities and so on. She called on African leaders to be committed in the future development of the African continent. She also highlighted the need for the transparent utilization of African resources for the benefit of all. “Africa is an enviable continent and we therefore need to focus and have the zeal and zest to deliver for its people; as Africans we need to dream big and think big and team work makes the dream works – there is unity in strength and we can make a difference in Africa’’ said Madam Nanette Thomas.
Other members from the Sierra Leone delegation including the Executive Chairman of APRM, Prof. Osman Gbla, Dr. Abdulai Dumbuya, Hon. J. B. Mansaray Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Political and Public Affairs, and Alphonso Manley made salient contributions during the Summit. Prof. Gbla spoke on the theme of Transformative leadership on Agenda 2063; but with a focus on the role of civil societies. Dr. Abdulai Dumbuya, who is a disabled advocate in the APRM NGC, spoke on the importance of the prioritisation of disability issues in governance and development; whilst Alphonso Manley talked about how Civil Society Organisations should create space for themselves and the need to involve them in governance process. Hon Mansaray deliberated on parliamentary structures that hold leaders accountable.
Moreover, the Sierra Leone delegation is expected to return home on the 27th August, 2016.