The three-day forum panel carried out an in-depth review of the following goals ‘ending poverty in all its forms everywhere, end hunger, achieve food security, improved nutrition, promoting sustainable agriculture and ensuring healthy lives among Sierra Leoneans.
The summit was aimed at achieving gender equality and empower women and girls, build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, foster innovation, conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development, and the same time strengthen the implementation and revitalization the global partnership for Sustainable Development.
Momoud Kagbo told the panel which was convened under the auspices of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), that Sierra Leone had reduced extreme poverty by thirty one percent in 2004 and about 14 percent in 2015.
He assured the panel that in the past years, the government of Sierra Leone had prioritized extreme poverty intervention in key areas within governance, and his government, government through its national commission for social action provided employment and conditional cash transfer to more than 10,000 youths, including unconditional cash transfer to more than 21,004 vulnerable households in nine of the fourteen districts in Sierra Leone.
“We remain committed to supporting our post war affected persons with special focus on war widows, war wounded and amputees, child orphans and victims of sexual violence and about 9,600 women have been provided with basic social protection packages in the past year” Momoudu Kargbo stated.
“We have also continued to provide massive assistance to thousands of survivors of the Ebola disease outbreak. Indeed we find it exceedingly unacceptable that we currently having to incur an annual food import bill of 350 million when domestic potential are enormous towards minimizing this expenditure and household poverty.
Furthermore, as minister of finance and economic development of Sierra Leone, he said his government through the enactment of a comprehensive public finance management bill was working assiduously towards boosting the country’s domestic revenue, and it scaled up service delivery capacity of the state.
He furthered that on May 29, 2017, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development together with the World Bank jointly organized a Sierra Leone Development Finance forum which was chaired by President Ernest Koroma.
The aim objective of the forum was to unlock private investment in Sierra Leone, put an end to extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity and development.
Parminda Barr, the World Bank Country Manager to Sierra Leone said $2.5 billion would be available to support the private sector in fragile countries like Sierra Leone, but critics of the government have denounced the administration for relying on donor partners to maintain economy unsustainable and the World Bank’s new approach of financing development and reducing poverty.
The minister spoke about government efforts towards curbing corruption during an interview and he went further to state that his government is fighting hard to end corruption in Sierra Leone, and the Anti-corruption Commission was set up to oversee, prosecute and investigate all issues of corruption.
The recent initiative on eradicating all forms of corruption is the Pay no Bribe campaign and it an arrangement jointly funded by the department for international development, in which corruption hotlines were set up to report corruption cases.