The National Social Security and Insurance Trust -NASSIT, on Saturday, 25th February 2021, donated a 500KVA Generator to Njala University during a ceremony held at the Torwamah campus of the university.
Formally donating the generator, the NASSIT Director General, Mohamed Fuaad Daboh said, “NASSIT is a statutory Public Trust charged with the responsibility of administering the Sierra Leone National Pension Scheme”. “The Scheme”, he went on “provides retirement and other benefits to meet the contingency needs of workers and their dependants”.
According to Mr. Daboh, the donation of the generator was borne out of the desire to fulfil the Trust’s responsibility to society, and the need to support the strengthening of the education sector, consistent with H.E. President Julius Maada Bio’s New Direction Agenda that prioritises education as its flagship programme to transform the nation.
The Director General said NASSIT was conscious of the fact that despite Government’s strides to provide universal access to energy, the Njala University was still experiencing a huge challenge – something that was brought to his attention during an engagement with the University authorities on NASSIT issues.
Mr. Daboh expressed the hope that the generator would be of immense benefit to not only the students who would increase their study time and graduate with good degrees, earn jobs and contribute to NASSIT, but also to the Njala University family that constituted both registered members and beneficiaries (pensioners) of the scheme.
He encouraged the University to consider the generator as a precious asset and make good use of it, and called on the public to support the Scheme in order for it to thrive and fulfil its mandate of providing social security protection for all it members.
Concluding, the Director General extended his appreciation to the Minister of Energy for his guidance in the process, and the Radisson Blu hotel Management for the transportation of the generator from Freetown to Bo, and its installation.
In his address, the Minister of Tertiary and Higher Education, Professor Alpha Tejan Wurie, applauded NASSIT for “such a worthy consideration”, adding, “strengthening the capacity of tertiary education is the only way to build the human capital of the country”.
The Minister expressed his satisfaction over the level at which the university was progressing, and called on its management to utilise the generator judiciously in order to sustain it.
Professor Wurie reminded the gathering about the pivotal role of the university in the development of the human resource capacity of the country, and called on Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora to come home and join the New Direction to improve the country.
On his part, the Minister of Labour and Social Security, Alpha Timbo, intimated the gathering that the move by NASSIT to solve the energy challenges at Njala was timely and in line with the government’s desire to give energy access to the entire country. He called on the students to make the best use of the opportunity to make good grades and for their wellbeing.
Receiving the donation, the Acting Vice Chancellor and Principal of Njala University, Professor Osman Sankoh, expressed his delight and gratitude to NASSIT for the gesture, adding that energy had been one of the challenges of his administration and that since its creation in 1964, the university had never benefitted from the national grid.
He informed the audience that his administration was positioning the Njala University to an enviable pedestal that would attract private sector investment. “I have already met with a number of financial institutions on the proposal, and I call on NASSIT to join in the public-private partnership”, he said.
On the issue of accommodation, the Professor stated that the current student capacity surpassed the available space in the university, and reminded the Director General of NASSIT of their promise to construct hostels.
Concluding, the Vice-Chancellor called on Government and other private sector players to emulate NASSIT by supporting Njala University for the good of Sierra Leone. The ceremony was climaxed by the pouring of libation by tribal authorities and the cutting of tapes by the Director General and the two Ministers, while the vote of thanks was given by the President of the Students Union.
NASSIT, WE CARE