Sierra Leone Brewery Limited (SLBL) on Thursday November 15, 2018 empowered the people of Wellington in a critical development area with commissioning of the first set of three out of seven submersible solar-powered water wells on behalf of their parent body, Heineken Africa Foundation.
The clean drinking water wells which will benefit residents of Wellington Industrial Estate, Koya Town and Loko Town are geared towards alleviating access to water for thousands of residents in SLBL’s operational communities.
SLBL is also sponsoring a water and sanitation project in Ward 352 which covers Mellon Street in Wellington and Calaba Town and a mini water dam at Up Mountain, Peacock Farm.
The cost of the investment amounts to Euro 69, 458 equivalent to over Le600 Million, with Euro 57, 008 (Le503, 653,325) already disbursed for the first phase of the construction.
Speaking at the landmark ceremony, SLBL’s Corporate Affairs Manager, Albert Ojo Collier, highlighted that SLBL continues to play a formidable role in the social and economic growth of Sierra Leone.
SLBL’s corporate social responsibility he said spans across support to sports, health care, provision of water and sanitation in communities and the education sector.
In the last four years, he enumerated that SLBL has expended Le5 Billion directly on health, water and sanitation throughout Sierra Leone.
Through HAF, Mr. Collier furthered that SLBL also supports the Lion Heart Hospital in Yele in Tonkolili district and another hospital in Masanga, both in the Northern Province.
These critical interventions in the country’s health sector started in 2010 with provision of ultra-sound equipment for the Well Woman Clinic prenatal services.
These investments, Mr. Collier said add to the many good stories that SLBL continues to tell to the people of this country as partners for growth and development.
He added that SLBL remains committed as a true corporate citizen and industrial leader to continue this good work in order to reach the remotest parts of our communities that experience huge water infrastructure challenges.
The SLBL Corporate Affairs Manager in conclusion expressed his gratitude to President Bio, the Mayor, Members of Parliament, councillors, and the Fourth Estate and community members that contributed to the speedy conclusion of the project.
Freetown City Mayor, Her Worship Madam Aki-Sawyer who graced the occasion noted that the SLBL water project covers the three key development clusters of Health, Water and Sanitation that the FCC is focused on; noting that the three have direct correlation.
She spoke of her council’s determination to transform Freetown into a different city that is built on resilience and stands strong like a cotton tree.
She also spoke of environmental challenges of the recent past including mudslide and floods; noting that cutting down trees induces these as well as causes drying up of water sources.
Mayor Aki-Sawyerr further spoke of her council’s plans to engage in urban planning and housing project, among other things.
However, she stated that the council’s ability to provide the goods and services that citizens require such as schools and furniture for them and new clinics; depends on citizens paying their personal and property taxes in addition to market dues. She challenged everyone to pay their taxes which she said can now be done easily through mobile money transfer.
She also disclosed plans for Freetown urban youths that are focused on human development activities such as education, skills development, job creation and empowerment of the disables. The project she said, targets 20,000 youths.
Additionally, another youth project targets 15, 000 youths that have dropped out of school and those that are semi-literate for literacy and numeracy education.
Another area in which her council plans to transform the city she said is through urban mobility that includes roads.
To keep Freetown communities clean, she said the council has introduced a zonal cleaning competition.
Her plan was warmly received by the audience who rendered a popularly Christian thanksgiving song.
Member of Parliament representing Constituency 115, Hon. Alpha Amadu Bah praised SLBL for always being at the service of the people in his constituency.
He remarked that he works collaboratively with the councillors in his constituency and other stakeholders, adding that we should all put Sierra Leone first.
Hon. Alpha Bah highlighted SLBL’s contribution to job creation, opportunity for local sorghum farmers and fulfilment of the Local Content Policy along the supply and distribution chain.
Other personalities that made statements were Idrissa Bangura on behalf of Ward committee members and youth organizations, women’s leader former Councillor Maseray Kebbay, Councillor Mohamed Jim Tholley of Ward 405 who gave an update of the project and the Councillor of Ward 406 Lucklyn Modus Mansaray.