State House, Freetown, Monday 25 January 2021 – Chairperson of the African Union Commission, AUC, Moussa Faki Mahamat, has paid a courtesy call on His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio and commended his leadership to foster development in Sierra Leone.
The AUC Chief also thanked President Bio for the opportunity to visit Sierra Leone, stating that his visit was part of a tour of all member states in the African Union. He added that it was important that he sought pieces of advice from member states on the African agenda to foster development in the continent.
He noted that the continent was facing challenges to tackle the surge of the Coronavirus and, therefore, urged all member states to increase multilateral engagements to find ways to make available COVID-19 vaccines to the continent.
“There is every need for the continent to maximize coordination and multilateral engagements in ensuring that Coronavirus vaccines are provided for the continent,” he said.
Mr Mahamat commended President Julius Maada Bio on his leadership in the country.
“Your Excellency, I want to commend your government and the people for your resilience during the Ebola, mudslide and now the Coronavirus. Sierra Leone is now a stable country. I believe after the Coronavirus pandemic, Sierra Leone will be a better place,” he concluded.
During his brief statement, President Maada Bio thanked the AUC Chair for his visit and for exhibiting excellent leadership during his tenure. He also praised him for the leadership he provided for their continental organization, noting that Abdel Fattah el–Sisi had also done a great job when was chair of the Africa Union.
“Africa faces very difficult challenges and we have always been in this situation. We always look for strong leadership, collectively, as a continent and as individual nations if we are to move forward as a continent. I will implore you to continue to work hard because there is a sign of hope, with our collective leadership, we will be able to succeed and put behind us most of these challenges,” he assured.
President Bio further stated that his country had gone through many tough times since the war, which he said left the country’s economy and social cohesion completely devastated. He said the Ebola virus, which also had a major effect on the people, the mudslide and now the Coronavirus pandemic had also destabilised the country.
“With all of these challenges, we realised that our shared and common purpose as a nation was bigger and stronger. Thus, we were able to surmount these many challenges,” President Bio explained.
He assured that the soon-to-be-established National Cohesion and Peace Commission would be the first to pay keen attention to the fundamental grievances that could easily lead to serious conflict within the country.
“This is a specialised body of eminent people watching to detect and defuse any sign of grievance or anything that will lead to conflict and put us apart again,” he noted.
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