The Minister of Labor, Employment and Social Security, Mohamed Rahman Swaray, has on Tuesday, 17th October, 2023, assured of President Bio’s determination to deliver on his promise of creating five hundred thousand jobs in five years as contained in his ‘Big Five’ manifesto commitments.
Speaking at the weekly government press briefing held in the conference room of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Tower Hill, Freetown, Minister Swaray stated that because President Julius Maada Bio considers youth unemployment as a national security threat, that is why he made job creation as one of his Big Five game changers.
He furthered that over the years, President Bio has been able to market Sierra Leone as one of the best places for investment with the right population of working age young people ready and willing to work.
As a government, he went on, they believe that they will only be able to create more jobs by providing the right and enabling environment in order to attract foreign direct investment and the private sector.
The Employment Minister noted that there is nowhere in the world where a government provides jobs for all its citizens. “Government has the responsibility to create a conducive and enabling environment for private sector players to thrive and create jobs.”
Minister Swaray emphasized the need for a buoyant, dependable, and resilient private sector that is willing and ready to create job opportunities.
He added that the world over, digital jobs are one of the most important set of jobs in this age, saying “the Government of Sierra Leone has invested hugely in digital infrastructure and laying fibre footprint everywhere to enable us as a nation benefit from these type of jobs.”
He implored everyone to help in the job recovery process so that government can achieve the five hundred thousand job creation in five years.
He maintained that employers should be able to employ Sierra Leonean nationals for jobs as low as shop keepers and mines workers instead of bringing in foreign nationals to do these jobs as provided for by the labour laws of Sierra Leone.
Minister Swaray disclosed that his Ministry has laid a paper before cabinet that seeks to address issues around certain labor laws that are considered obsolete.
He informed that they have been engaging partners including the Sierra Leone Labor Congress, Sierra Leone Employers Federation, and other committees while reviewing a lot of areas in the Employment and Labor laws in order to protect Sierra Leonean jobs.
The Employment Minister urged all private sector employers to fulfill their NaSSIT contribution obligation for their employees to ensure they retire gracefully after serving.