May 24, 2019
By Ibrahim Tarawallie
The Ministry of Finance and the Kuwait Fund Arab Economic Development on Wednesday,22 May, 2019 signed a US$17 million agreement to finance part of the gap for the Freetown WASH and Aquatic Environment Revamping Project.
According to the Financial Secretary in the Ministry, Sahr Lahai Jusu, the project is aimed at improving water and sanitation in the capital city.
He stated that the shortage of safe drinking water has been the biggest challenge facing the Freetown municipality and is affecting all and sundry.
He disclosed that the African Development Bank is one of the financing agencies in the component, adding that their agreement was ratified by Parliament on Tuesday 21 May, 2019, with the project expected to commence before the end of the year.
He added that the proposed total financing for the Freetown WASH and Aquatic Environment Revamping Project is estimated at approximately US$174.84 million, with the African Development Fund providing approximately US$14.14 million- a loan of US$8.27 million and a grant of US$3.73 million.
Other proposing financing institutions include, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, Islamic Development Bank, OFID, ISDB, Saudi Fund, Green Climate Fund, Adaptation Fund, EBID and Government of Sierra Leone.
Mohammed Sadeqi, who heads the delegation from Kuwait Fund, expressed their delight to participate in the project. He said having being in the country for almost two weeks, they have learnt the importance and impact the project stands to create to the social and economic development of Sierra Leone.
“It is expected that the project will tremendously impact communities in the capital and this model will be used in the future to develop the rest of the country’s water sector and other infrastructure,” he said.
He spoke about their decision to start the initiative by selecting two independent systems that will be implemented the project in a fast track way in order to make it visible to all the financiers, who indicated their interest in financing the project.
He disclosed that the Kuwait Fund will be contributing $17m to the project and they envision that within 2019.