Hardship bites Mama Salone: Part II
Oh my God, hardship has overtaken homes of the poor and rich! Just recently, the price of a cup of rice has gone to Le 1,200. Be it known that a bag of rice (fen fen) is now sold at Le 200,000.
Sierra Leonean women have had it hectic each time they reach the market to purchase cooking items.
A look at the salaries of workers contradicts expenditures of parents on a monthly basis.
The majority of Sierra Leonean workers including the police and military receive less than Le 300,000 monthly.
Now, a look at a rough mathematical calculations owing to expenditures of civil servants of Sierra Leone: receives Le 300,000, spends Le 310,000 on food i.e. Le 10,000 everyday (31 days), spends Le 5,000 on lunch for at least three kids, transportation Le 5,000 = go the extra mile – corruption.
Poverty and hardship have twisted faces of very beautiful and handsome Sierra Leoneans.
It is virtually a culture in the Sierra Leonean settings that homes cater for one meal a day.
Mothers, fathers, children etc., go hungry in the morning and at noon, but eat in the evening.
Streets of Freetown are occupied by families begging for their living.
Children have become drop outs and are at streets with their parents to fend for their livelihood.
Of course, unemployed youths have been forced to become cart pushers while the others as thieves and fraudsters (419ers).
As for the serialized introduction and imposition of variety of taxes by both the National Revenue Authority (NRA) and local councils at respective provincial towns including Freetown, traders have resorted to selling their commodities high above normal market prices to enable them meet to government tax demands.
As at year ending 2007, the exchange rate of the dollar to the Leone was at Le 2,000 to Le 2,300. To date, it has risen to Le 4.,400.
It is unfailingly expected that the foreign exchange may rise far above Le 4,400 by mid 2011.
The introduction of tax Goods and Services Tax (GST ) apparently resulted into the untold acceleration of prices in the market.
Yes, unconfirmed sources say GST generates money for government.
How is the money used, has it any reflection to the lives of ordinary Sierra Leoneans, is it not directed for use elsewhere etc, are the unanswered questions.
Shades of opinion attribute the hardship to the world’s general predicament.
An excuse Sierra Leoneans accept as gospel truth.
Again, questions surrounding government’s implementation of strategies to counter the self acclaimed hardship seemed not put in place at all.
It is agreeable that the world generally moves around and within terrible happenings, one of such is hardship.
But countries including some African states have had strategies coined up to forestall high speed hardship in society.
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