November 26, 2015 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
Foundation for Rural and Urban Transformation (FoRUT) yesterday engaged civil society organisations and community base organisations from across the country on the new draft national alcohol policy.
Speaking at the one day event, Programme Director at FoRUT, Abdul Aziz Turay, said the purpose of the meeting was to review the Sierra Leone Alcohol Policy document which had been prepared by an alliance of non-state actors.
He said the mission of the alliance was to reduce alcohol-related harm to men, women and children by advocating for polices independent of commercial interests and reducing consumption levels, using appropriate information, education and communication strategies. He said they envision a peaceful and social Sierra Leone, where every Sierra Leonean enjoys their lives in dignity and prosperity, and where alcohol and drugs do not prevent individuals from fulfilling their full potential.
Chairman of the alliance, Ibrahim B. Kamara, said FoRUT is one of many organisations that is working on the reduction of alcohol and drugs consumption in the country. He revealed that a mapping of organisations working on alcohol and drugs in the country was conducted in 2013, adding that in June 2015 they formed an alliance of 25 organisations from across the country which was officially launched in October 2015.
Kamara said the alliance comprises Sierra Leoneans and Sierra Leone non-governmental organisations working on the reduction in alcohol-related harm to men, women and children in the country, including advocacy on policy reform.
He said the alliance has the main focus of making recommendations to the government and stakeholders about the harmful use of alcohol and drugs.