President Koroma honours USD 1 Million AFISMA pledge
His Excellency President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma on Wednesday 4th September 2013 honoured the USD 1 Million pledge the country made to the African-led International Support Mission to Mali (AFISMA) during the Donors’ Conference on Mali.
The presentation coincided with the swearing in of the new Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita who took the oath of office today.
The Donors’ Conference which was held during the African Union Summit in January aims at restoring the Rule of Law and territorial integrity of Mali. It was jointly organized by the sub regional bloc, ECOWAS and the African Union Commission.
Presenting the cheque on behalf of President Koroma, Sierra Leone’s Ambassador to the Democratic Federal Republic of Ethiopia and Permanent Representative to the African Union, Ambassador Andrew Gbebay Bangali recalled that on the instructions of President Koroma, Hon. Dr. Samura Kamara, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation made the pledge.
“The purpose of my coming here today is to hounor the pledge made by my President, His Excellency President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma,” he said, adding that Sierra Leone is committed to helping other countries in the Continent both militarily and financially.
Ambassador Bangali also underscored the role Sierra Leone is playing in helping to stabilize Somalia, adding that he reiterated the difficulties the Sierra Leonean peacekeepers were encountering in AMISOM Sector 2 in Kismayo as a result of the disenchantment between the Kenyan troops and the Somali Government.
He said that the Presidents of Kenya and Somalia had promised to settle their differences during the recent AMISOM Troop Contributing Countries’ Summit of Heads of State held in Kampala, Uganda.
Receiving the cheque on behalf of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Ambassador Ramtane Lamamra, Commissioner for Peace and Security of the Commission said that the presentation was a sign of indication that Africa can response effectively to challenging situations.
“I hope we can build on Sierra Leone’s example. It is good we start implementing our decisions,” he said.
Ambassador Lamamra pointed out that Sierra Leone’s deployment with AMISOM was significant and it made a lot of sense.
He said: “What the international community failed to do in the 1990s in Somalia is what Africa is now doing in Somalia.”
According to the Commissioner for Peace and Security, the deployment of the Sierra Leonean contingent in Kismayo made a political sense as the Nigerian Reform Police Unit would also be deployed in Kismayo very soon.
The duo also exchanged views on the transformation of AMISOM into a United Nations peacekeeping outfit in the near future.
The ceremony was also witnessed by Mr. Francis Kandeh, outgoing Head of Chancery and Mrs. Juliana Fallah, First Secretary and Desk Officer of the Committee of 10 Heads of State on the United Nations Security Council Reform in the Embassy of the Republic of Sierra Leone in Addis Ababa.
From the Commission’s side, the following were present: Mr. Biodum Adeyemo, Head of Peace and Security, Finance Division and Madam Sheyam Elgarf, Political Officer in the Department of Peace and Security.
Abdul Karim Koroma
Embassy of the Republic of Sierra Leone