March 25, 2021
By Aminata Phidelia Allie
Information Officer, MLSS
The Ministry of Labour and Social Security on Friday, 19th March, 2021, concluded a two-day stakeholders’ consultative meeting for the establishment of Labour Desks at Gendema and Gbalamuya in Pujehun and Kambia Districts to monitor the inflow and outflow of migrants in the Country.
The meetings aimed at getting stakeholders in these border areas to share their experiences on irregular migration and to discuss the way forward for the establishment of Labour Desks in the selected locations. This will serve as a means to maximize the potential benefits from Labour Migration.
The deputy minister of Labour and Social Security, Mr Lansana Mohamed Dumbuya, in his statement informed the meetings about the numerous benefits that could be derived from Labour Migration if done in a safe, orderly and coordinated manner. He also stated that plans were on the way to lift the temporary ban placed on labour migration by the ministry in 2019. Therefore, the idea of establishing Labour Desks is timely, laudable and cannot be overemphasized.
He further pointed out that the Labour Migration Policy of Sierra Leone is not only intended for Sierra Leoneans, but for foreigners as well, as it provides regulatory mechanisms as to how Labour Migration should be conducted. He also urged community stakeholders to help enhance the easy establishment of the Labour Desks.
Moses Bassie Conteh, Senior Labour and Employment Officer and Head of Migration Unit of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, pointed out that because of high illegal and uncoordinated migration, there is lack of accurate data in respect of the number of citizens migrating annually. In light of the above, the government always faces challenges in repatriating citizens back to Sierra Leone.
Meanwhile, the news of the establishment of Labour Desks in the border crossing points was welcomed by stakeholders in all three districts; Kambia, Pujehun and Portloko Districts.
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The team was informed that there are at least two hundred other unattended border crossing points between Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
The Migration Unit will conduct an assessment and identification tour for the establishment of the Labour Desks in the coming months. Similar consultative meetings were held in Lungi in November 2020, and early March 2021 in Freetown.