Sierra Leone Telegraph: 31 July 2017
President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone today, Monday 31 July 2017, met with the president of Cote D’Ivoire – Mr Alassane Ouattara, for bilateral and multilateral consultations.
According to State House Communication Unit, the two leaders exchanged views on the further deepening of existing bilateral relations to promote the national priorities of the peoples of both countries.
President Alassane Ouattara was conferred with an insignia by president Koroma, in recognition of his contribution to strengthening what State House described as an excellent bilateral relations between Sierra Leone and Cote D’Ivoire, and his relentless efforts in fostering cooperation and collaboration at multilateral level within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union, and the Mano River Union.
Both Cote D’Ivoire and Sierra Leone had gone through civil conflicts and are now at peace, governed by democratically elected governments.
The Ivorian leader paid tribute to the people of Sierra Leone for showing a high degree of resilience in the face of the unprecedented Ebola epidemic.
President Ouattara expressed hope that the bilateral relations between the two countries would be strengthened to maximize benefits for the peoples of both nations.
He expressed sincere thanks and appreciation to President Koroma for his role in resolving the political impasse that ensued in Cote D’Ivoire in the aftermath of his electoral victory in 2010.
He also expressed appreciation for president Koroma’s personal contribution towards Cote D’Ivoire’s membership of the United Nations Security Council for the period 2018 – 2019.
In response, president Koroma stated that the two countries have strengthened bilateral ties to the next level as well as agreed on further deepening multilateral relations. He lauded the leadership role of President Ouattara not just in Cote D’Ivoire but in the sub-region.
According to President Koroma, the basis for democracy is peace and security, saying that his Ivorian counterpart has done a lot to bring peace to Ivory Coast.
President Koroma also commented on the forthcoming 2018 general elections in Sierra Leone, which he hoped to be peaceful.
He noted that the two countries share the same views on the fight against terrorism and in strengthening their security and intelligence network.
Both leaders agreed to promote and fast-track collaboration towards economic cooperation, trade and investment in agriculture and infrastructure development.