…Says President Koroma
February 26, 2016 By Victoria Saffa
President Ernest Bai Koroma yesterday stated that his government cannot move on without transforming the lives of youths in the country.
He made this statement during the official launch of the Revised National Youth Policy 2014 and the commissioning of 70 outboard fishing boats with 70 Horse Power engines at the Tambacula wharf, Aberdeen, west of Freetown.
The project was jointly funded by the government of Sierra Leone, through the Ministry of Youth Affairs and the ALWALEED FUND, with technical advise from the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources.
According to President Koroma, the fishing boats formed part of ongoing youth employment scheme to create jobs for young people in fishing communities, adding that seven districts along the coast would benefit from the project.
He said the project would benefit a thousand youths in the country, thus applauding the Ministry of Youth Affairs for their efforts, adding that the ministry was established purposively to shepherd youths.
President Koroma appealed to the beneficiaries that the project was pilot and that it success would send a signal that youths are ready to transform, and promised that his government would continue to support youths in all spheres of development.
Minister of Youth Affairs, Alimamy Kamara, said they have been promoting youths in the areas of education, agriculture and fishing, among others, since the ministry was established.
He thanked ALWALEED FUND and development partners, including the World Bank, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), PLAN-SL for partnering with the ministry to achieve their goals.
He said the fishing project would employ thousands of youths in the country, adding that they work with the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and have established farms where many youths have found employment.
“If the government did not transform the lives of young people, the country will never change and it was because of this that the president established the Youths Ministry to transform the lives of young people,” he said.
Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Alieu Pat-Sowe said the fishing project was one of the achievements of the Agenda for Prosperity, adding that the Agriculture Ministry would be providing technical support to artisanal fishing.
He said majority of young people in the country depend on fishing activities and that they had thought it fit to open a fishing school in order that beneficiaries could be well-educated on fishing activities.