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Page added on July 27, 2012
The Attitudinal and Behavioural Change (ABC) Secretariat on July 23rd, 2012 successfully completed educating its earmarked partners at the Conference Hall of the Ministry of Information and Communications, Youyi Building, Freetown. (Cross section of the participants)
The newly selected ABC Partners that comprised of the Sierra Leone Indigenous Traditional Healers Union, Fourah Bay College Students, Students’ Independence Movement, Friends of Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma Foundation, and Children Empowerment for Good Transformation were among other things sensitized on the ABC Concept and how the implementation of a robust partnership with them could help the Secretariat in attaining the eradication of negative attitudes and behaviours among Sierra Leoneans.
Welcoming participants at the well attended one-day sensitization meeting the Minister of Information and Communications Hon. Ibrahim Ben Kargbo underscored the importance of His Excellency President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma’s foresightedness to initiate the ABC secretariat in order to address Sierra Leone’s major problem of the prevalence of poor attitudes and behaviours being practised by his subjects.
According to Hon. Ibrahim Ben Kargbo irrespective of Sierra Leone’s endowment with invaluable mineral resources it cannot progress with her citizens being reluctant in avoiding to shy away from the practise of negative attitudes and behaviours. He called on the participants to fully collaborate with the ABC Secretariat since according to him Sierra Leone is faced with myriad of poor attitudes and behaviours which cannot be successfully uprooted without the involvement of each and every citizen.
In his opening remarks the Chairman of Ceremony, who happens to be the Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Communications, Mr. Gilbert Cooper commended the ABC Partners for endeavouring to associate with the secretariat’s task, which he described as daunting, that requires the involvement of all Sierra Leoneans and development partners as well. He encouraged the attendees to make good use of the sensitization exercise which he said will undoubtedly empower them to serve as ABC Secretariat’s ‘Change Agents’. He furthered by assuring the participants of how they and their various organisations are going to become the thrust of ABC Secretariat in advancing its operations.
Making a statement on behalf of the Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Mr. Sheka Tarawally, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Communications, Mr. Sheku A.T. Tamu stressed the need for the participants to fully cooperate with the new Executives of ABC Secretariat whom he described as exemplary figures who have used the best of their capabilities in accomplishing President Ernest Bai Koroma’s vision. Mr. Sheku A.T. Tamu furthered that he has no doubt in the working abilities of the Executive Director and National Coordinator and Second-In-Command, Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas and Madam Nanette Thomas respectively. He assured the ABC Partners that they would definitely not regret working with Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas and Madam Nanette Thomas who he concluded to describe as not only valuable assets of the Ministry of Information and Communications, but the government and country as well.
Declaring the purpose and intent of the education meeting the Executive Director of ABC Secretariat, Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas bemoaned the rampant manifestation of negative attitudes at all levels of Sierra Leone, more so educational institutions, traditional organisations, Sierra Leone Police, contractors, transport sector, justice system, politics and mining sector among others. Dr. Thomas highlighted corruption, the killer of innocent citizens, cultism, poor performance of government contracts tribalism and violence as serious causes of concern for which his Secretariat demands partnership with stakeholders of the Sierra Leonean society. The ABC Secretariat’s Executive Director thanked the participants for thinking prudent to partner with his organisation in ensuring that the exhibitions of poor manners by their compatriots become a thing of the past. He assured them of a formidable working relationship by which general meetings, training programs, and joint programs would be held with them on continual basis. Although these facilities he said would be limited by the financial bottlenecks his institution is faced with, the partnership relationship he informed is liable to establish legitimacy among them.
In her statement the National Coordinator and Second –In-Command of the ABC Secretariat, Madam Nanette Thomas informed about the relevance of religion and healthy family life towards the change of negative attitudes and behaviours that she informed are been practised by plenty Sierra Leoneans. She educated the participants on the need for patriotism to be more valued than partisan, religious, regional and tribal sentiments which she said are adversely affecting Sierra Leone’s development. Madam Thomas emphasized the responsibility Sierra Leoneans owe to their motherland. She maintained that regardless of the country’s abundant resources and intelligent citizenry Sierra Leone would not attain its already observed economic potentials in the midst of unrefined practises.
She also informed the participants that she is not looking for big successes but the small successes achieved the ripple effects would be great. She stressed that the fact that the participants of the different organisations requested to partner with the ABC Secretariat clearly demonstrates that the Secretariat is doing its job. She encouraged the participants to serve as agent of change in which they all agreed.
Making sound contributions were the President of Sierra Leone Indigenous Traditional Healers Union, Dr. Alhaji Sulaiman Kabba; Representative of Fourah Bay College Students, Sheku Mansaray; Representative of Students’ Independent Movement, Hinga G. Lavally; Founder of Friends of Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma Foundation, Sulaiman Suntus Kamara; and Representative of Children Empowerment for Good Transformation; Saidu Kamara.
Climaxing the education meeting of ABC Partners was an interactive session that permitted the mapping out of what areas each of the organisations will be effectively partnering with the ABC Secretariat in transforming the negative attitudes and behaviours of Sierra Leoneans to positive ones.
A Vote- of -thanks was given by the National Public Relations Officer of Sierra Leone Indigenous Traditional healers Union, Shuaib I Kanu.
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