And who is Edmund Koroma?
Prior, to, and immediately after theÂ end ofÂ the 2007 Presidential and Parliamentary elections, Sierra Leoneâ€™s Inspector-General of Police, Brima Acha Kamara came under serious attack from the local media for what they perceived as theÂ then unwarranted political behavior Â of his police Â officers. It was not an easy drive for him. But I recall, Brima Acha Kamara, telling me, in an interview with Independent Radio Network, that â€œthe press is a necessary evil.â€ (Photo: Pa John Baimba Sesay)
Press & governance
I have continuously been following developments in the Sierra Leone media relating to the way it takes on issues of national development and I must hasten to inform, that much has happened which, to me is encouraging to say the least. In national development, the media is relevant and this is a point that cannot be disputed. Let us take a look at the fight against corruption; the ACC has been making headways in recent times as a result of the positive support it has continued to receive from the media.
The media has also continued to even support national development programmes and I must say that Persistent Koroma was able to win the last elections due to the support he had then and still continues to have from the media. And it is with this in mind that I am writing a piece on Sierra Leoneâ€™s currently Financial Secretary, Edmund Koroma. He was the head of the National Social Security and Insurance Trust, Nassit.
Edmund @ Finance
This man has been at the Ministry of Finance as Financial Secretary and I remember writing few months that Edmund Koroma and team at the Ministry of Finance should be credited for undertaking good initiatives aimed at effectively manning the economy of our country. We only would need to revisit the 2010 Budget where the Minister of Finance, Samura Kamara, spoke of promoting â€˜sustained high economic growth, while consolidating macroeconomic stabilityâ€™. From there, we would come to appreciate the role that the Ministry has continued to play in our socio-economic development. The budget itself ensures provision of a significant shift from recurrent to capital spending and also at the same time, reflects governmentâ€™s focus on â€œinvesting on our future…â€
Dr. Samura Kamara and Edmond Koroma have always taken the lead in pushing matters of economic recovery, under the last couple of months, especially following the recent global recession. And it would be right toÂ therefore commend them for having working assiduously in getting us a budget as the oneÂ read in Parliament few months back.
The finance ministry and other finance managers of our government have ensured that salaries are being paid on time; there have been no tremor in our banks; imports have been coming regularly. We must give credit to finance guys like Dr. Samura and Edmond Koroma who have guided the finance ship through one of the most confused seas the world has ever had to sail through.Â
It is not a boast, just a statement of fact when during the Budget speech the Minister of Finance said, in spite of the adverse impact of the global financial and economic crisis on our economy, Sierra Leone wasÂ still able to make continued progress in â€˜maintaining a stable macroeconomic environment with positive growthâ€™. The finance minister can only make such a statement because of the able support he has received from finance wizards in the finance ministry like Edmund Koroma.
Monitoring government projects
IÂ admired at the Kabba(h) regime if for no reason but the fact, that it was under his regime that we experienced the creation of post conflict institutionalÂ reforms like Nassit, NRA, IMC et al. Also, the then government tried in also ensuring a great success in our reconstruction effort, but what was apparently lacking, in my view, an effective monitoring system on government projects.
This has been an area that the present government has learnt some lessons. Quite recently, the current Financial Secretary was crisscrossing the country, monitoring projects that have been implemented for/on behalf of government. And I am of the view that something positive came out of that monitoring exercise and maybe, the Ministry of Finance would only need to come out and tell what the outcome was.
There are several success stories at the finance ministry which could be credited to the Financial Secretary .At present there is a proper coordination of all MDAs making them efficient especially in dealing with donor funds. Practically, Edmund Koroma is a key pioneer of infrastructural developments in the country and especially in major district towns. The monitoring of all government and donor funded projects thus ensuring that they are implemented on time and meet the direct beneficiaries. There has been the setting up of procurement, evaluation and independent review committees in ensuring that procurement procedures are met and last but not least, he has ensured the quick payments of contractors and MDAs- school subsidies paid on time
Edmund @ Nassit
I am also trying to look at how the National Social Security and Insurance Trust scheme has continued to make significant progress even after Edmund Koroma was removed from that institution to the Ministry of Finance. Nassit, from a realistic point of view, has been one of the successful institutions ever created by government. We have seen the level of long term investment it has brought for us as a nation and we only would need to revisit our past, compare it to the present and see whether there has been no effective progress.
The success that is today been spoken of, regarding Nassit came as a result of the tremendous effort of Edmund Koroma. One point must be made clear, there is no institution that should continue to grow with challenges; there were several challenges facing Nassit but the fact is these challenges never hindered the smooth operation of the institution.
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Your website has become a free for all. Where everybody just writes roto rata. I am afraid this is not professional journalism. Soso court barray politics. And a Nigerian Editor does not make this a Sierra Leonean website. Oga go back nar you country.3rd June 2010