Today, 9th May 2023 is Europe Day celebration and the theme for this year’s celebration is ‘Solidarity and Unity’. Every year, the National Authorising Office (NAO) joins the European Union Delegation in Sierra Leone to celebrate Europe Day.
This year NAO is celebrating this day to also showcase how the European Union and Government of Sierra Leone Development programmes and projects have helped to bring unity and solidity that also helps to strengthen the peace and integration in the country.
Europe Day celebration theme this year dovetails with EU’s development programmes through its ‘Support to Key Infrastructure Project’ in Sierra Leone’. This project supports the construction of roads and bridges that helps to build solidarity and unity amongst people and between nations, communities, chiefdoms, cities, districts and regions in Sierra Leone.
For example, the Bandajuma–Liberia Road and Bridges Rehabilitation Project provides for the upgrading of 100km of roads between Sierra Leone and Liberia thereby building the relationship between the Republic of Liberia and the Republic of Sierra Leone. This road project has improved road network between the two countries and open their main gateway and restoring a vital link between the two countries that is helping to bring unity and solidify the relationship between Sierra Liberia.
The Moyamba-Moyamba Junction Road project in the Southern province has improved between Moyamba Town which is on the southern part and the Masiaka-Bo Highway which is on the northern part to facilitate access to the South-Eastern districts in the country. The construction of the two-lane Alikali Modu II Bridge formerly known as the Magbele Bridge over the Rokel River creating connectivity between western area and the north-west and north-north of the country. The Koblo-Gulama Bridge formerly known as the Mabang Bridge over the Ribbi River has helped to unite and solidify the northern and southern regions of the country.
These infrastructure projects are in line with Government’s effort in improving the roads network in the country in an attempt to unite and solidify the relationship between the north-west and south-east of the country thereby improving the lives of Sierra Leoneans through agriculture, health care and other social amenities.
The NAO gauged opinions of beneficiaries of these EU funded road projects where they narrated their stories and also explain how these infrastructures have helped to build unity and solidarity through business, agriculture, culture exchanges and other social activities between the north-west and south-east. They also expressed gratitude to the EU and Government of Sierra Leone for improving national cohesion through these road/bridge infrastructural projects.
Efficient road infrastructure is an important driver for building unity and solidify economic and social development between communities, cities, districts and regions in any country. NAO believes Sierra Leone’s unity, solidarity and economic development is also highly dependent on the transport of people and commodities through road networks.
The rehabilitation of the core road network to enhance national and regional integration is therefore, a priority for the government of Sierra Leone.
The upgraded infrastructures and road network between Sierra Leone and Liberia has enhanced living standards and facilitates access to basic social services, improving trade and economic integration of the West African region especially between Sierra Leone and Liberia and in particular between the North and South of Sierra Leone.
At the National Authorising Office (NAO) we continue to facilitate GOSL-EU development cooperation for the benefit of Sierra Leone.