By Donstance Koroma
The President, Sierra Leone Voluntary Blood Donor Association, Desmond Lewis have disclosed that his association since its inception in 2006 have never been considered for both national and regional awards.
He continued that his association is only considered when patients are in critical condition and in need of blood or to observe the international blood donor day.
Between 2006-2008, the Association had over five thousand voluntary blood donor’s country wide Lewis mentioned
He added that during those days, blood banks were not struggling for blood due to the then collaboration between the donors and the national safe blood service program.
Traditional motivated activities that use to hold donors together are currently a thing of the past he stressed.
President Lewis thanked AICS, Italian Association Solidarity among People AISPO and the Ministry of health and Sanitation for their support to strengthen safe blood transfusion in the country.
The country’s leading blood donor with 180 unit of blood to his credit called on the government and donor partners to help the association with an office space in order to boost the association.
The Western Area Regional Transfusion Centre is a modern structure with a solar roof panel back up to ensures a cool chain for blood with a procurement and stock control management Manuel, an expert in computer management programming.
The regional transfusion centre will serves as a working and learning environment for staff, donors and students
The 1.3 million Euro project consists of 6 technicians with plans to commence production of blood component.
Chief Minister, Prof. David Francis, has expressed Government’s determination to transform the agriculture sector and restore food self- sufficiency in Sierra Leone.
Officially declaring the third Quality Produce Fair (QPF) open, the Chief Minister said that the Government of Sierra Leone was committed to supporting farmers and farmer cooperation’s across the country in order to also empower rural farmers to export their produce.
He reiterated that apart from the free quality education, the government’s second priority was agriculture.
“A country will never develop if it fails to feed its people. That is why His Excellency President Dr. Julius Maada Bio came here in Kenema last year, for the first time after his 2018 elections victory, to launch the QPF. The President in his speech assured you all of his Government’s commitment to revamping the agricultural sector,” he noted.
Prof. Francis added that the event was aimed at showcasing the produce of farmers, giving excellence to those with quality harvest and motivates others to emulate the winners.
Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr. Edward Hinga Sandi, and his deputy, Rev. Abraham Sesay-Jones, reiterated the significance of farming, especially of cash crops, that had helped to develop the economies of Ivory Coast and Ghana.
They pledged Government’s continuous commitment to supporting agriculture, which would reduce the importation of commodities and promote economic diversification among others.
The Executive Chairman of the Produce Monitoring Board, Dr. James Vibbi, said that the theme of this year’s event was “Quality Produce for Sustainable Development”, adding that without quality produce there would be no value.
He urged all farmers to register with the Government and get their business registration.
The Cocoa of Excellence Award was given to Sahr Bangura from Kono as the best farmer in Sierra Leone and among the best 50 farmers in the World. Presenting the award to the famer on behalf of the Government, the Chief Minister congratulated Mr Bangura for making Sierra Leone proud. He encouraged him to do more, urging others to emulate him.
During his field tour to the various booths, the Chief Minister stopped at the Standards Bureau booth and said “our Government takes the Bureau very seriously because we cannot achieve quality export without conformity assessment from the Bureau.”