Minister of Local Government Tamba Lamina cut the tape to the facility while EU Ambassador looks on
Makeni, Bombali District, 8th December 2022: Today, the Bombali District Council, in the presence of the European Union Delegation to Sierra Leone, the Ministry of Local Government and Community Affairs and the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, have officially handed over new market stalls facilities to serve the critical needs of farmers, petty traders and the communities to support the socio-economic development of Panlap and Makama communities in Bombali District.
The European Union provided funds for the newly constructed market stalls to support the district’s critical infrastructure needs and benefit approximately two thousand people, particularly women and farmers who depend on small agri-businesses for their livelihoods. This investment will significantly provide security for their businesses, improve sanitation and safety, increase the incomes of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and smallholder farmers, and boost the revenue generation capacity of the district council.
The handing-over ceremony was graced by the esteemed presence of Sierra Leone’s Minister of Local Government and Community Affairs, Hon. Tamba Lamina, the Deputy Minister of Economic Planning and Development, Hon. Dr. Robert Chakanda, Chairman of Bombali District Council, John Shangai Koroma, Head of Cooperation of the European Union Delegation to Sierra Leone, Gerald Hatler, Government officials, development partners, traditional and local authorities and women and youth groups, including hundreds of beneficiaries.
The development of markets is one of the EU-funded investments in Bombali District that is part of the Support to Civil Society and Local Authorities for local development in Sierra Leone programme. Other EU contributions towards the economic and social development of Bombali District include the construction of a cattle paddock, a university campus student hostel, water facilities and the rehabilitation of feeder roads, culverts and bridges, in line with the District Development Plan.
Before the construction of the facilities, traders in these communities used to sell their products in temporary makeshift structures along the highway, posing severe risks to the health and safety of traders and motorists. The new infrastructure will increase accessibility to market trading and promote economic opportunities for local traders, who are primarily women. This focus greatly supports the national development agenda of the Government of Sierra Leone and the EU’s goal of economic and gender equality. The market facilities will also protect produce and other perishable goods from inclement weather. Furthermore, the facilities will generate revenue to support the Bombali District Council in support of decentralization and the provision of critical social services to the local population.
The District Council also celebrated the handing over of water, hygiene and sanitation (WASH) facilities built by Inter Aide. The EU-funded WASH facilities will greatly boost the quality and quantity of water available and improve basic sanitation for the community.
Through this programme, the EU has funded the construction of additional market facilities in Falaba, Kambia, Karene, Kenema, and Pujehun District. The market projects are just one example of the EU’s support to developing Sierra Leone’s infrastructure to enhance effective service delivery by district councils, promote local development and support decentralization efforts.