…says Acting Minister
February 2, 2016 By Yeabu Bangura
Acting Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Madam Kadija O. Seisay, has disclosed that parallel Acts or the establishment of institutions like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Protected Area Authority (NPAA) and National Revenue Authority (NRA) pose serious challenges to their operation.
While highlighting the challenges the ministry was being faced with, Ms. Seisay stated that land policies developed by the ministries of Lands and Agriculture for wet lands and lands closer to beaches are a problem, as well as lack of vehicles for staff at the ministry.
According to her, inter-ministerial or institutional collaboration and funding for proposed projects and programmes are also perennial problems she inherited.
She said strengthening the legislative framework was ongoing as the new National Cultural Policy had been launched, the Monuments and Relics Act of 1967 was being reviewed to meet international best practice, as well as the Tourism Development Act of 1990, while the Eco-Tourism Policy had been validated, with the final document being prepared.
“Lumley Beach Development Master Plan has been produced and the development of the beach front will start soon. We have also reconstituted and established a secretariat for the Monument and Relics Commission with professional staff,” she said.
The acting Tourism Minister added that the Government of Sierra Leone, through the Human Resource Management Office, has approved over 30 vacancies for both the tourism and cultural sectors of her ministry.
She noted that it was the responsibility of the ministry to protect cultural heritage sites across the country and that the demarcation of a buffer at Fourah Bay College was in progress for restoration, while plans were also in progress to open Bunce Island for domestic and international tourism excursions.