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"Not All is Lost In Sierra Leone"-----SLTU Scribe

8 January 2006 at 16:44 | 466 views

By Our Correspondent

The Secretary General of the Sierra Leone Teachers Union Mr. Davidson Kuyateh has observed that not all is lost in Sierra Leone and that the country is on the path of national healing and rehabilitation.

Mr. Kuyateh, who was speaking recently to members of the Sierra Leone Foundation, a UK-based NGO said the SLTU has worked tirelessly to make the Labour Congress in Sierra Leone a successful and powerful organisation. The Labour Congress, he explained, is made up of all the workers unions in the country and it speaks with one voice for the workers. The only limitation it has, he went on, is that is does not speak for the entire nation. It can only speak for its workers.

Because of that,Mr. Kuyateh further explained, in 1988, the ALL CIVIL SOCIETIES movement was formed. It was later named CIVIL SOCIETY SIERRA LEONE and it comprises of union workers and other citizens of Sierra Leone. This society was able to mobilise and put pressure on the government and the rebels to agree to the terms of the Lome Peace Accord which led to the end of the rebel war in Sierra Leone. He was one of the representatives that witnessed the signing of the peace accord.

Mr. Kuyateh said the Civil Society Sierra Leone also played a considerable role in the return to democratic elections buy putting considerable pressure on the government to carry out free and fair elections after the war. On the day of the elections, it mobilised fourteen radio networks to report fully the process of voting from all corners of the country.

On national development the SLTU scribe opined that it is only Sierra Leoneans that would create meaningful development in the country. "If we as Sierra Leoneans cannot come together to tackle our problems, who do we expect to do that for us? ",he asked.

He praised the Sierra Leone Foundation for its developmental aspirations and observed that it has he has seen the organization doing and what it intends to do in future, is an initiative which he has not seen in any of the countries he has travelled so far where there Sierra Leoneans. What he has seen in those countries, he said, is Sierra Leoneans forming organisations to organize parties, dances and outings and christening events.

Sierra Leone Foundation, he continued, is the first organization he has known that is concentrating on organising all Sierra Leoneans all over the world to think about paying back to Sierra Leone what Sierra Leone has done for them. The most important help that Sierra Leone needs today, he emphasised, is national development. The main objective now for every Sierra Leonean living abroad he suggested, is to stop condemning and do things that would drive development forward.

"Nearly all the leaders and prominent politicians we have had have lived and even studied abroad, but so far they have never implemented what they have learnt and seen abroad. If members of the Sierra Leone Foundation abroad want to break away from that mentality and think of doing something in Sierra Leone, it is the right step in the right direction", he said.

On the political front, he noted that more needs to be done at grass root level to change the politics in Sierra Leone.

The Sierra Leone Foundation is a developmental NGO comprising of Sierra Leoneans all over the world. Its headquarters are in Reading, United Kingdom.

Photo: Sierra Leone’s Labour Minister Alpha Timbo

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