The president of the Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines has on Tuesday 15th July 2014 at the Radisson Blu hotel officially launched and established the newly invigorated "SIERRA LEONE CHAMBER OF MINES" which represents the interests of the mining sector, advocating on its behalf and promoting its growth and development for the benefit of all Sierra Leoneans.
The president Sierra Leone Chamber of Mines Mr. John Bonoh Sisay in his presentation said the mining industry has a long history in Sierra Leone which has much to be proud of. He said minerals are finite resources which are increasingly focused on strategies to support sustainable economic development. He said the S.L.C.M is aimed at fostering skills as well as encouraging and supporting an increase service, industries and manufacturing capacity in Sierra Leone. He stated that the current debate from the media, mining communities, government, investors and other stakeholders indicate plainly that their expectations of the mining sector and its contribution to national development goals and ambitions have increased significantly. He said the chamber of mines has signed a declaration of cooperation that commits the mining industry to work with government and other partners to progress the implementations of the local content policy to see to it that through the Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative (E.I.T.I) it will be able to accurately verify data on what the extractives sector is actually contributing to Sierra Leone economy.
Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources Hon. Alhaji Minkailu Mansaray said the effective functioning of the SLCM will increase the growth of Sierra Leone economy. He said the chamber has taken a task that required a lot of development; therefore they should ensure strict compliance to make mining companies more responsible. He said the ministry will do their best in helping the SLCM to achieve their goals to make mining sector viable and attractive. He revealed that the SLCM has created business opportunities for sierra Leoneans as well as foreigners and hoped to see that all mining companies in Sierra Leone become members of the chamber.
The executive chair Environmental Protection Agency Ms. Haddijatu Jallow said mining companies must comply with rules and regulations to reduce poverty and improve economic sector within a protective environment to participate in quality development. She said the chamber must share best practice among members and partners to contribute to national and international progress. She said the chamber should minimize their activities to keep the environment safe and healthy for the future generations.
General Secretary, united mineworkers union Mr. Ezekeil Dyke said they were yearning for the institution so that a better welfare and the quality of mining workers are improved. He said the chamber should establish a legal framework to address issues in the mining sector to ensure that mining companies achieve maximum production. He stated that the future of Sierra Leone is strongly coming from the mining industry and they are determined to work with their partners and government in a collective manner for a stable relationship.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.