January 12, 2014 By Victoria Saffa
Despite the Ebola epidemic that has had a serious impact on tourism, the Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs over the weekend unveiled two newly appointed attaches and showcased its projected plans after the outbreak.
Acting Minister of Tourism, Ms. Kadija O. Seisay, identified the two cultural and trade attachés – Lansana Fadika, Cultural and Trade Attaché to Asia; and Madam Jeneba Sesay, Cultural and Trade Attaché to ECOWAS.
The two appointees are expected to project the good image of Sierra Leone’s culture abroad in order to change preconceived perception about the country, in a bid to lure tourists and investors to visit and invest in the country respectively.
Speaking at the conference hall of the ministry on Kingharman Road in Freetown, Ms. Seisay said that though badly hit by the scourge, the ministry intends to implement development projects in 2015, including transforming tourism sites, strengthening tourism policies, upgrading the Relics and Monument Commission, and easing the burden of tourists raveling into the country.
Director of Cultural Affairs, who chaired the event, Foday Jalloh, said the ministry has worked assiduously hard to improve the sector despite the Ebola outbreak, which has killed more than two thousand and left the economy in ruins.
Jalloh said the ministry envisions the creation of a Cultural Village in Sierra Leone, as the present one is in a very deplorable condition. He expressed hope that funds provided by government and donor partners would bring fruition to that vision.
He noted that the proposed Cultural Village would be quite useful to both tourists and children yet unborn as it would showcase the good cultural values endowed in the country. He said cultural ideas espoused by legends like Macco Conteh, Alusine of Prisons and Amie Kallon should not be allowed to decay.
The event was attended by a host of dignitaries, including deputy Government Spokesperson, Ajibu Jalloh; deputy Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs, Mustapha Bai Attila; Director of Tourism, Mohamed Jalloh; Chairman of National Tourist Board, Ahmed Wurie; and Director of Media at Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation, Ransford Kabia.