Are we Celebrating Independence or Dependence?

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By Elkass Sannoh

Many Sierra Leoneans within and outside the country are asking if indeed we are celebrating INDEPENDENCE or DEPENDENCY.

My answers are:We are celebrating 60 years of Freedom of the Press; We are celebrating because 60 years today, No Political Detainees.

We are celebrating because salaries are paid without being reliant on bank overdraft or loans just to pay monthly salaries.

We should celebrate Access to Justice with the deployment of the first Resident High Court Judges in Kailahun District, Port Loko District, Moyamba District and Koinadugu District all unprecedented since independence.

Free internet connectivity for 1000 School pupils since independence.

We are celebrating the modernisation of car wash centres since independence, to create permanent jobs for youths.

We are celebrating Free Quality Education for primary, Junior and Senior Secondary schools since independence.

We are celebrating the first e-learning as lecturers at the University of Sierra Leone now teaching students via video, first since independence.

We are celebrating a Monthly savings of Le. 5.0 Billion out of fake payroll detected which provided fiscal space to recruit 1,600 new teachers, first since independence.

We are celebrating the Cancellation of two loan agreements totaling 300 million United States Dollars that posed huge financial burden on the citizens, first since independence.

We are celebrating scholarships for all students pursuing courses in the sciences at Universities and Colleges in Sierra Leone: Engineering, Mathematics, Medicine, Agriculture etc and the 25% increment of salaries for all lecturers.

• 9 months in governance without international funding with reliant on domestic revenue, the first since independence.

• Appointment of first woman Deputy Inspector General of Police, first since independence.

• 300 females recruited in the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces, first since independence.

• Over 21 Billion Leones raised so far from corrupt persons with very high conviction rates, first since independence.

• Payment of salaries to all Mayors and Chairmen of Local Councils, first since independence.

.Ultra-modern diagnostics and radiotherapy cancer treatment center with 9.8 million United States Dollars already approved for the construction work, first since independence.

My question is: are these not worthy of celebration?  Even if you are against President Julius Maada Bio but celebrate development for sustainable growth.

Indeed there are still challenges but with a glimmer of hope, many Sierra Leoneans are confident that under the President Bio’s leadership, Sierra Leone will be a better place to live within the sub-region.

Email: superilsannoh5@gmail.com 27/04/2021