Tuesday, January 23, 2007

NaCSA Boss boosts Banana Island in Sierra Leone

The social development activities of the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA), headed by Alhaji Kanja Sesay, is not only concentrated in mainland Sierra Leone. It also takes its social development actions to Island peripheries with the overriding objective of ensuring that they are part of the territory of Sierra Leone. One of such Islands is the Banana Island located along the coastal slopes of the Western Rural Area of Freetown. NaCSA has almost completed two infrastructure projects on the Island; a Health Centre complete with a staff quarter and all its amenities and a six class room block Primary School; they are awaiting finishing touches for their official handing over to the Banana Island community. The facilities are first of their kinds to be constructed for use by the inhabitants of the Island. Both projects started mid last year. As part of his holiday activities, the Commissioner of NaCSA, Alhaji Kanja Sesay paid an unannounced visit to the Island on Sunday, 24th December 2006 to see first hand progress made so far on the respective projects. Speaking to a cross section of the Islanders, Commissioner Sesay said the two projects underscore government’s commitment to providing basic amenities for its people. He recognized the difficulties faced by the people in accessing these facilities. He also noted that the provision of the facilities would open up the Island for other development programmes from government and other development partners. He assured that early in the New Year (2007) the facilities; the health centre and the school would be opened and handed over to the community. Commissioner touched on the natural beauty of the Island noting that Banana Island has an impressive potential that can be harnessed for the socio-economic development of Sierra Leone. He mentioned the Island’s historic background which he described as "rich in culture" and which could be packaged for tourist attraction to Sierra Leone. The Town Head, represented by an old Clergy, Rev. Father Poet Jones thanked the Commissioner for the visit, noting that while he was expected to be enjoying his holidays quietly with his family, he had decided to go to the Island to see for himself at first hand the progress of what his Commission was doing on the Island. He also thanked NaCSA for considering the Island for the projects with particular emphasis on the health centre, which he noted would go a long way in ameliorating the problems of health care and other health emergencies on the Island. According to Rev. Father Jones with NaCSA’s intervention especially in the education of their children, it has moved a considerable step to addressing the poverty on the Island. "When our children are educated we are sure that would help to drive away poverty and deprivation on this Island", Rev. Jones indicated. On the issue of health care, he stated that the construction of the health centre will stop the risk of night travels by sea to convey their sick either to Freetown or nearby Kent. Link to Awareness Times