Sierra Leone is set to undergo a substantial economic makeover following the unveiling of a new national medium-term economic plan by the Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Kenyeh Barley, on January 30th of this year.
Minister Barley outlined the key elements of the medium-term development plan, emphasizing its strategic focus on the government-identified “big-five changers and enablers.” The big-five changers encompass projects such as the Feed Salone initiative and Human Capital Development, while the enablers include Climate Resilience, Gender Mainstreaming, and Financing and Mobilization.
Highlighting the comprehensive nature of the seven-year medium-term plan, the minister stressed the extensive consultations involving 30 to 40 thousand individuals from diverse districts, transcending political boundaries and extending beyond the year 2030.
Following the official announcement on January 30th, Minister Barley assured that the ‘Home Grown’ medium-term plan will be made accessible to all citizens in Sierra Leone.
Additionally, Minister Barley pointed out that the Feed Salone Agricultural project, a crucial component among the ‘big-five changers,’ will play a pivotal role in addressing economic deficiencies by fostering agricultural development, leading to increased productivity, export growth, and revenue generation.
Addressing Sierra Leone’s global standing, Minister Barley highlighted the nation’s ten-year role in chairing the G7+ and active participation in African Union (AU) and MRU activities. She emphasized Sierra Leone’s global competency as a cornerstone for the medium-term development plan.
“While consultations for the medium-term plan are ongoing and extending beyond 2030, we are also aligning with the AU 2063 agenda,” added Minister Barley.
Madam Barley further announced the initiation of Sierra Leone Agenda 2063, aligning with the AU’s Agenda 2063. Extensive consultations titled “The Sierra Leone We Want” are scheduled for the coming year.
In response to the minister’s announcement, Andrew Lavallie, representing Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), acknowledged that a 2018 election survey conducted by his institution found that 79% of promises made were either partially fulfilled or not fulfilled at all. During his presentation on the new development plan, Lavallie urged the media to equip themselves for effective promotion and questioned the lag in involvement by other civil society organizations.