MFMR/NEPAD poised to rebrand fisheries sector in Sierra Leone
Freetown, (SLENA): A three-day Review and Training Workshop on Fisheries Policy and Law, Fisheries Management, Planning and Five-Year Strategic Plan has ended at the conference hall of the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Youyi Building in Freetown.
The programme, which attracted key stakeholders including traditional rulers, Local Council officials, civil society representatives and members of the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) Programme for African Fisheries (PAF) Governance Working Group, was part of the on-going collaboration between NEPAD and the Government of Sierra Leone aimed at reforming the fisheries sector in the country.
In his opening remarks, the Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Capt. Momodu Allieu Pat-Sowe said members of the NEPAD Governance Working Group came at a time when the ministry is transforming the fisheries sector into a an enviable entity and thanked them for their intervention.
The Fisheries Minister pledged his ministry’s continued desire to contribute to national development through the reduction of poverty, creation of employment and the generation of revenue and also thanked the group for finalizing the Fisheries and Aquaculture Bill as well as helping to develop the ministry’s Management Functional Review process.
Assistant Director of Fisheries, Hotanga Arnold Robbie said the development of the fisheries sector is crucial to the successful implementation of the Government’s Agenda for Prosperity.
He urged stakeholders to ensure that the ministry’s strategic plan moves beyond five years and entreated participants to make meaningful contribution that would enable the fisheries sector provide effective and efficient service to the nation.
Giving an Overview of the workshop, the National Coordinator of the NEPAD’S Programme for African Fisheries, Sheku Sei said the overall objective of the workshop is to further contribute to fisheries development by focusing on Fisheries policy and law, Fisheries Management, planning and the development of a five-year strategic plan.
He spoke of NEPAD and other partners’ desire to help develop policies that would enable African countries gain optimum benefit from their fisheries resources.
The National Coordinator of the West Africa Fisheries Programme, Dr. Sallieu Sankoh thanked NEPAD for coming up with reforms such as wealth-based approach to fisheries and assured the experts of the ministry’s determination to fully implement them.
A member of the PAF/ NEPAD Governance Working Group, Arthur Neiland described fisheries as a very complex system, noting that their main aim is to develop an ecologically sustainable and economically effective fisheries sector in Sierra Leone. The programme was chaired by the permanent Secretary in the Ministry of fisheries, Mani Koroma.
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