June 16, 2015
The Commissioner and Director of SOCEPs, National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA), have attended the 40th Annual Meeting of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) in Maputo, Mozambique from 3rd – 13th June.
NaCSA successfully implemented the Sierra Leone Community Driven Development Project I (SLCDD I) from 2010 to 2013, with a record disbursement rate of 100%.
In 2013, a team of senior management of the commission and the Ministry of Finance made a familiarization visit to IDB headquarters in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. During the visit, the bank’s management was impressed with the commission’s performance on SLCDD I and had ‘no objection’ in providing additional funding for phase II of SLCDD, also coined ‘GIETRENK’.
The project was approved by the IDB Board in October 2014 and the signing of the loan agreement was scheduled for the 40th Annual Meeting in Maputo, for which the Ministry of Finance and the commission were invited during which the loan agreement for the SLCDD II ‘GIETRENK’ project was signed.
The $51.93 million agreement was signed on 8th June with IDB and government contributions of US$46.68 million and US$5.25 million respectively.
Speaking on the nature of the SLCDDII/‘GIETRENK’, NaCSA’s Project Officer, Information, Education and Communication, Abu Bakarr Conteh, said the scheme would build on Phase I’s (SLCDD I) interventions and scale-up on the earlier successes in the well-performing chiefdoms by promoting community-driven development interventions within a new dimension to development – the Rural Growth Pole Model Approach.
He said the project would mainly benefit the poor in the selected six cluster chiefdoms in all the regions, except the Western Area.
The project is designed to transform each of the selected chiefdoms’ capital headquarters into economic hub villages and the section capitals into satellite villages, while the hubs would be transformed into modern communities with strong links to urban centers to act as regional economic hubs, providing neighbouring satellite villages a common platform to launch and scale-up their economic activities.
To achieve this, each of the six economic hubs would be allocated a total investment of between US$3 million to US$7 million within the overall framework of developing Rural Growth Poles (RGPs), structured around ‘Multi-utility Renewable Energy Platforms’, the engine that would spur the scale up of economic activities in each chiefdom and section capitals, using the value chain approach.
The economic groups that will be created from the poor population, such as Micro-Enterprise Groups (MEGs) and Self-Help Affinity Groups (SHGs) comprising extremely poor and vulnerable women, youths and disables, will benefit from these interventions.