September 14, 2021
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Republic of Sierra Leone Madam Mamadi Gobeh Kamara, accompanied by Mr. Sulay-Manah Kpukumu, Deputy Director-General for Policy, are in Kenya on a study tour of the Foreign Service Academy (FSA) of the Republic of Kenya within the context of South-South Cooperation.
The study tour is conducted with a view to understand its operations and best practice that will inform the development of the soft infrastructure of Sierra Leone’s Foreign Service Academy which is currently under construction with an expected completion date of September 2022.
The Deputy Minister’s delegation to the FSA also included H.E. Isatu A. Bundu, High Commissioner of the Republic of Sierra Leone to Kenya, Mr. Abdul K. Kargbo, Minister Plenipotentiary and a cross section of the mission’s diplomatic staff.
The delegation was received at the FSA by Amb. Michael A.O. Oyugi, Director-General, Foreign Service Academy and his team.
The Director-General introduced his team to the visiting delegation while the Deputy Minister established the purpose of the study visit saying “ My delegation is here to learn from you on the journey of the establishment of your FSA. Kenya’s diplomatic academy which ranks high among others on the continent has trained outstanding diplomats across the continent, therefore sharing those experiences will enhance our capacity to produce diplomats of high standing as we strive as a nation to change the narrative in our Foreign Service’’
Following introductions, Director-General Oyugi delivered an informative and insightful presentation cataloguing the mode of operation of the FSA its relationship with the Foreign Ministry and other entities.
Assistant Director of the FSA,Mr. Jackson Nyagaka Onkoba, in his presentation, gave a brief history of the FSA, its mandate, evolution, activities, curriculum, achievements and resource personnel, with the latter including experienced diplomats, highly trained civil servants, lecturers, researchers, consultants and think-tanks.
Mr. Onkoba further presented the activities of the FSA which included induction for newly recruited Foreign Service officers, posted officers, newly appointed Ambassadors and High Commissioners, knowledge management, focal point on MFA events, designing, developing and implementing Foreign Services Officers’ training curriculum among others. He noted that the key objective of the Academy is to accord trainees with knowledge on diplomatic and international relations that will enable them garner understanding of Kenya’s Foreign Policy as well as be equipped to carry out their roles and responsibilities both in and out of the country.
The Assistant Director further elaborated on the achievements of the FSA through collaboration with local and international universities, UN Agencies, some of whom have facilitated the award of scholarships and fellowships, training in foreign languages and many more.
He also shared plans for a transformational process of their FSA which aims to establish a Kenya Council of Global Affairs (KCGA) with affiliate centres that will generate policy, thematic articles, organize seminars, and participate in International events and round table panel discussions/dialogues.
In conclusion, the Kenyan team thanked the Deputy Minister and her team for choosing Kenya as benchmark for this exercise and hoped that the discussions held and presentation will enrich the development of the soft infrastructure for Sierra Leone’s Foreign Service Academy.
The Director General called on the Deputy Minister to consider twinning programs between both academies as part of efforts to deepen collaboration between both countries for win-win outcomes.
The study tour was climaxed by lunch in honour of the Deputy Minister and her delegation.