Supplement: European Investment Bank Boosts Ecobank

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a 50-million Euro loan agreement with ECOBANK, the African bank with the most predominant presence on the continent – present in 30 African countries. US$ 2.9 million of that facility is for ECOBANK Sierra Leone, the bank with the fourth largest investment in the country. The EIB loan to Ecobank Transnational Incorporated is to help Small and Medium term Enterprise (SME) investments with a view to reducing poverty on the continent.

Bottom Line: A Nation without conversation

There’s something we need to do urgently in this country. It’s really urgent. We need to significantly raise the quality of our national debate, make it substantial, open and clean – devoid of partisan rancour and cheap political sniping. With less than a year to the next presidential and general elections, Sierra Leone is more deeply divided today than it was in 2007. We have reached a stage where the colour of one’s clothes, one’s friends and one’s choice of even soft drink, marks you out as either APC or SLPP.

Varsity gags lecturers

By James Tamba Lebbie
The Njala University administration has come out with a code of conduct and disciplinary policy for its staff. A document from the Office of the Registrar to Academic and Senior Administrative staff members, which has been leaked to Politico, states among other things that except with the prior authority of the Vice Chancellor and Principal of the University, no staff members should issue any press statement or take part in any public debate or discussion on any matter relating to the business of the University.

22 prisoners freed

Seven men, 11 women and 4 juveniles have been released from the Pademba Road and the Freetown Female prisons after they had been convicted by a Freetown magistrate court for loitering and jailed for six months. They include a pregnant woman who gave birth behind bars and a 16-year-old girl who was concerned she might miss out on her school-leaving exams starting shortly. According to a press release from AdvocAid, the civil society organisation that campaigned for their release, several of the detainees were injured, allegedly by the police.

Sierra Leonean woman becomes ECOWAS Commissioner

Six new Commissioners of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have taken up office in Abuja, Nigeria. They include Khady Ramatu Sacco of Sierra Leone who becomes the Commissioner of Administration and Finance. Mrs Sacco is the former Director of Finance and Budget at the Bank of Sierra Leone.
The new commissioners emerged following a recruitment exercise which has now been validated by the ECOWAS Council of Ministers at an extraordinary meeting, according to an ECOWAS press release.