Sierra Leone Telegraph: 20 December 2020:
Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) last week signed Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with local and international NGOs.
The symbolic signing ceremony involved 35 agricultural and related projects that are being implemented by 20 NGOs. The SLAs will ensure that the NGOs provide a defined set of services in the agriculture and forestry sector.
In his address, Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Dr. Francis Kai-Kai recognized the invaluable role NGOs play in meeting the aspirations of the government; noting that NGOs are regarded as critical actors in the actualization of the government’s Medium Term National Development (MTNDP 2019-2023).
“When NGOs align their plans with the MTNDP, it will be very easy to promote effective service delivery and discourage duplication of function. The President Bio-Led administration will ensure that NGOs work within the specifications set by the line Ministries to ensure at least 70 percent of the funds for a particular project is used for direct implementation, as this will also promote President Bio’s call for an accelerated service delivery next year,” he said.
Dr. Kai-Kai implored NGOs to continue the good work they are doing, encouraging them to always attend the District Development Coordination Committee (DDCC) meetings that the Ministry of Planning is currently setting up in the districts, with the pilot phase commencing in Pujehun, Karene, Bonthe and Falaba.
The Acting Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Dr. Abubakarr Karim, in his keynote, thanked the MoPED for championing the process of delivering the SLAs; stressing the need for a singular vision in addressing the several challenges within the agriculture and forestry sector.
He emphasized the importance of accountability and transparency to the citizens in the delivery of targets and plans.
Dr. Karim noted the importance of collaborating with NGOs in strengthening systems and providing efficient data analytics for effective service delivery; stressing on the Ministry’s commitment to providing an enabling environment for NGOs to operate and contribute to the development of the agriculture sector in a free, responsive, transparent and accountable manner.