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Statement by Dr. Richard Konteh on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Today, Dr. Richard Konteh joins the many people crying and fighting for the complete eradication of poverty. In a world characterized by an unprecedented level of economic development, technological means and financial resources, millions of people are living in extreme poverty. It is a moral outrage.

Poverty is not solely an economic issue, but rather a multidimensional phenomenon that encompasses a lack of both income and the basic capabilities to live in dignity.

It is widely believed that Sierra Leone possesses vast natural resources including mineral deposits of bauxite, diamonds, gold, iron ore and rutile, in addition to extensive farmland and marine resources etc. With all these, our nation remains among the world’s poorest countries, ranking 181 out of 189 countries in the Human Development Index in 2020.

Poverty is killing the people of Sierra Leone! More than 60% of the population lives on less than US$ 1.25 a day. Sierra Leoneans experience many interrelated and mutually reinforcing deprivations that prevent them from realizing their rights and perpetuate their poverty, including dangerous work conditions, unsafe housing, lack of nutritious food, unequal access to justice, lack of political power, limited access to health care etc.

Poverty is pushing the young, talented and dynamic youth every day to risk their lives in dangerous sea-crossing, trying to reach Europe for a better life. High levels of structural unemployment and under-employment thwart the hopes of these young people. It’s a shame that this country cannot cater for the needs for its younger generation. It is heartbreaking that Sierra Leone cannot overcome this vicious circle of poverty.

Dr. Richard Konteh commends the many efforts that have been made both past and present to solve Sierra Leone’s poverty problems, but he believes more can be done to eradicate poverty! Dr. Richard Konteh believes that even the chronically poor households have productive potential that can be unleashed if properly supported.

Dr. Richard Konteh’s leadership will empower the small private sector and invest heavily in developing human capital and raising its productivity. He will create social protection programmes that allow people to meet their basic consumption needs, protect their assets during crises, and save and invest in productive assets and higher-return activities. He will ensure that Sierra Leone’s natural resources are utilized wisely.

Join Dr. Richard Konteh and D-Unifier team to work together to eradicate poverty in Sierra Leone and achieve social and environmental justice for all.

Dr. Richard Konteh-IDEP_Oct 17
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