IDB President, Saudi Fund Director Assures Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s former envoy to Saudi Arabia, Germany and Nigeria and now Development Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development last week led a five-man delegation to Saudi Arabia to meet with officials of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) in Jeddah and Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) in Riyadh.Â (Photo: Amb. Umaru Wurie, members of his delegation, and senior officers, pose for the press)
Ambassador-at-large, Umaru B. Wurie’s delegation which included, Mr. Kawusu Kebbay, Director DACO, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Mr. Denis J. S. Garvie, Deputy General Manager, National Power Authority, Ministry of Energy & WaterÂ Â Resources, Dr. Abdul Jalloh, Director, Bumbuna Project Management, Ministry of Energy and & Water resources, Mr. Umaru G. Sesay, Director, IDB Projects, Ministry of Education, Mr. Kekura Bangura and Senior State Counsel, Ministry of Justice, met with the President of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), His Excellency, Dr. Ahmed Mohamed Ali and Managing Director of the Saudi Fund, Mr. AlbassamÂ Mahmoud.
In their meeting with the IDB Chief, the Head of Delegation said they successfully negotiated the unfreezing of stalled projects in Water, Power, Education and Infrastructure.
Speaking in a brief interview with this writer in Riyadh, the Kingdom’s Capital, shortly before they left for Freetown, Mr. Wurie commended the Islamic Development Bank for its continued assistance to the people of Sierra Leone. “The Islamic Bank has been able to provide global support to many Sub Saharan countries in Africa and Sierra Leone has been one of its major beneficiaries,” the seasoned diplomat re-iterated.Â “We are expecting a team of experts from the Bank to visit Freetown in the next few weeks to lay the ground work for the commencement of the project,” the soft-spoken diplomat said.
In another related development, the Saudi Fund also approved loan assistance to finance the second transmission lines for Bumbuna and the third phase of the Western Area powerÂ supply, roads etc. Asked if the trip was successful, Mr. Wurie responded in the affirmative, saying: “Sierra Leone will soon receive a supplementary loan from the Saudi Fund for the Western Area power supply Phases (1 & 2) to supplement Bumbuna in the dry season.
“Sierra Leone has made significant strides over the years and our financial institution is ready to provide the much needed support to help in boosting energy security and improving infrastructural sector in Sierra Leone,” the Saudi Fund Director was quoted to have said.
Mr. Wurie also informed this writer that the signing of the Power Supplementary Loan will be on 20th June, 2010 with the Minister of Finance and the Saudi Fund Managing Director in Azerbaijan Capital, Baku.Alhaji Jalloh, Information Attache, Sierra Leone Embassy, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
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