ENCISS strengthens the relationship between Civil Society and the State
On Thursday June 13th CSO representatives from across Sierra Leone joined senior Government officials and leading non-state actors for the National CSO Forum held in Freetown.
Hosted by ENCISS at the British Council’s Tower Hill complex, the forum followed a series of CSO forums held regionally since June 7th 2012, and was part of their support for the positive and strategic engagement of state and non-state agents by Sierra Leone’s civil society.
Civil Society Representative Mr. Paul Koroma said that they affirm government’s priority to engage the youth in productive activities, economic advancement, deliver sustainable peace. We are mindful of our right to freedom of expression and also rule of law, availability and access to information, review of the 2012 act- powers to invalid vote by NEC.
Mr. Koroma called on government to undertake a comprehensive analysis of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, ensuring speedy implementation of minimum of 10% quota for youths.
Alpha Sankoh, ENCISS Programme Director, noted the programme had come a long way since its inception and made a significant contribution to the governance landscape of Sierra Leone. In three calls, the programme has awarded 244 grants worth over Le 25 million, in addition the programme has contributed to building the capacity of civil society organisations in areas such as budget monitoring, advocacy, communications and results-based management.
A UKaid and EU supported initiative, the ENCISS Programme aims to improve accountability and strengthen the voice of citizens, their participation in decision-making and access to information, thereby strengthening the relationship between society and state, and support Sierra Leone’s poorest communities. The National CSO Forum was a CSO planned, implemented and owned event, for which ENCISS provided technical and financial support.
Alhaji A.B.S. Kanu, representing HE the President, said that ENCISS coordination in the country is of great immense and thus encouraged other Non Governmental Organisations to follow its steps.
The National Forum pledged to continue the advocacy, learning and sharing begun with the presentation of the CSO Communique to HE President Koroma on June 7th 2012, to continue to broaden efforts within the ENCISS Enhancing Impact Plan across Sierra Leone by bringing state and non-state actors at all levels to dialogue, and to suggest solutions to issues of national significance.
The exercise has been planned, implemented and owned by CSO’s but that ENCISS on the side-lines is supporting it by providing the funds, space and coordination through the ENCISS Programme Teams and Enhancing Impact
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