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Awareness Times News Briefs from Sierra Leone
By Awareness Times News
Dec 15, 2008, 11:06
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Opposition SLPP Refuses to Endorse Bill

The 2009 Appropriation Bill laid before Parliament by the Finance Minister is getting tough time to be passed as the annual budget. Opposition SLPP reportedly say they identify a lot of lapses in the budget proposal for which reason they have decided not to be part of passing it into law. Some of the lapses they allege not in the interest of the state are the no allocation for the Matotok-Kono high way construction project and an allocation made to a non national interest, the Diaspora wing of the APC party. Money also allocated to Parliament is reported to be part of the reasons for their refusal to endorse the bill.

Canada-based Company Gains Mining Concession

The Government of Sierra Leone has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a Canada-based mining company to undertake artisanal alluvial mining in Gbense chiefdom, Kono District, reports say. Mexivada Gold and Diamond Mining Company is reported to have been allowed to undertake an initial mining of a 1 acre site near Yardo in the heart of the Koidu mining area. The deal involves Mexivadas management of the project with a 70% share of profit. Gbense Chiefdom will receive the remaining 30%.

Police on Cross-border Vehicle Theft Training

Personnel of SLP have joined their counterparts in the sub-region in a cross- border vehicle theft training at Abidjan, Cote D Ivoire. Ten serving members of various ranks were being reportedly scrutinized by Police Headquarters to ascertain their competence. The training is said to be funded by the world policing body, INTERPOL. The sessions are currently ongoing at the sub-region bureau of INTRERPOL.

Minister Says Salone to Get More Ferries

The Acting Minister of Transport and Aviation has reportedly intimated that the country will soon benefit from more ferries for the Kissy-Tagrin sea route. Though the Minister did not disclose if the venture is to be undergone by a private entity or government, he however, reportedly said that the ferries will soon arrive. He also spoke of mechanisms put in place to put both the sea and airports in proper manner to be more competitive in marching with international standards.

Government to Re-advertise NRA Positions

Local tabloids have intimated the government of Ernest Bai Koroma of having intentions to re-advertise certain senior positions of the National Revenue Authority (NRA). The positions include those of Deputy Commissioner, Excise and Customs Commissioner and three other commissioners heading various departments. There have been constant reports of shortfall in revenue collection of late, especially at the customs department. This has warranted a barrage of condemnations of the Commissioner General for being a relaxed administrator, unlike his predecessor, an experienced World Band economist.

South / Eastern Chief Unhappy with APC Govt

Parliamentary Council of Paramount Chiefs are said to be unhappy with the APC led government of President Koroma for imposing court clerks on their local courts in the south and eastern parts of the country. In a strong worded letter reportedly signed by Chief Kaikai on behalf of Pujehun chiefs, the chiefs deem the act as inimical to good governance, peace and stability in their various chiefdoms. The hand picked appointment by the APC government has reported led to near absence of jurisdiction in those chiefdoms. Those appointment are said to be controversial, rebellions and ill-disciplined people in their localities who the people have refused to work with

Church Donates to Polio Victims and the Blind

A Christian organization, Greatest Goal Ministries has reportedly collaborated with the Single-legged Amputee Association to donate 60 clutches and white cane sticks to polio patients and the blind respectively. The donation is expected to benefit those who do not have clutches or sticks, or those who have over used pervious ones. The handing over ceremony was said to have been recently done at the National Stadium in Freetown.

SABABU Project Distributes Text Books

The partnership programme of the SABABU Education Project has reportedly started the distribution of core text books to primary schools in the western area. According to reports, almost all pupils in various primary schools will receive these most needed materials. This is an ongoing process by the SABABU project through its partners to salvage the war battered educational system. The project is reportedly put together by the World Bank and the Government of Sierra Leone in the tune of US$ 42m.

© Copyright by Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

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