Sierra Leone’s First Lady, Mrs. Fatima Maada Bio, has on Sunday 22nd January 2022, given one hundred million Leones (Le100m) to the Ma Nyande Women’s Development Cooperative.
Addressing the beneficiaries, the First Lady of Republic of Sierra Leone, Dr. Fatima Maada Bio encouraged Ma Nyande Women to invest the monies given to them in farming and help other women understand the importance of farming.
First Lady Fatima Maada Bio advised the farmers to stop exporting their produce to neighbouring countries, while calling on them to give back to the country by selling their produce in the country.
Chairlady of Ma Nyande Women’s Development Cooperative, Juliet Lavaley, said the organization is owned by women, disclosing that it was formed in 2018 to address challenges that were faced by women.
“The aims of this cooperative are many but prime amongst them is to improve the lives of women in agriculture, by creating opportunities for access to market, land, technology, knowledge and resources,” she said.
She said the cooperative’s objective is to promote access to crops that commercially viable and improve capacity for the women.
“The women should be able to handle high yields of quality onions, pepper, corn, sweet potatoes, ginger and other crops. They should have a knowledge in processing of the yields that will increase economic value of crops, improve processing time, extend shelf life, and improve market opportunities,” she said.
Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Dr. Abu Bakarr Karim, said the New Direction Government under the leadership of President Bio has come a long way towards promoting agricultural productivity in the country.
“The president in his manifesto did not only emphasize the importance of food security and food sustainability but also demonstrated exemplary leadership by taking girls lead in establishing farms and cultivating, producing especially rice, the country’s staple food in the country,” the agriculture minister said.
President Julius Maada Bio said his presence in the district was to touch base and to extend thanks and appreciation to everyone especially the children, who are the most important and valuable assets in the country.
“They are our future because tomorrow they will be in charge of the affairs of our country. If we fail in our responsibility as leaders of the nation to ensure that children achieved their full potential, they would not develop as a nation,” he told his audience.
President Bio said that he was happy with the turn out of the youths, women, children and all the district stakeholders who showed up to receive him in the district, noting that he was happy with their level of organisation for my visit.
“The children are our future, and with the investment my government has made in them, they will become our lawyers, medical doctors, teachers, presidents, ministers, and directors, among other prominent persons in the nation. Most of us here present today should have become doctors, lawyers, ministers, journalists, and directors. But because of bad political leaders during their time, some people were unable to achieve their full potential. My government doesn’t believe in talking because we want to. So, whenever I make a pronouncement, I will work towards ensuring I deliver on it,” he said.
“So, today, I want to inform you that talks are ongoing for the commencement of the road that will link Moyamba District with the rest of the country, but that will only come to fruition during my second term of office,” the President assured.
President Bio emphasised that the only way out of poverty for the country was for children to be educated, and therefore, called on all Sierra Leoneans to not only focus on his governance strategy but also to have faith in his leadership style for the country’s development.
Strategic Communications Division
Office of The First Lady.