A three-day induction for over 35 newly appointed High Commissioners, Ambassadors and Financial Attachés has ended (Saturday, 25 August, 2018) with a certification ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Conference Hall, Tower Hill, Freetown.
Organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the induction aimed at capacitating the newly appointed diplomats to promote Sierra Leone’s economic and commercial interests abroad; negotiate treaties and agreements to protect and promote the national interests; play an active role in conflict prevention and crisis management in the sub-region and beyond; manage the country’s bilateral relations as well as working with international and multinational organizations.
In his closing statement, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Alie Kabba congratulated the newly appointed diplomatic staff for the successful completion of the induction and called on them to be better prepared for tactical policy coordination and networking in their respective missions. He also stated that the three-day induction was in line with the New Direction’s Foreign Policy strategy to enhance Economic Diplomacy and fulfil His Excellency’s promise to this nation to promote career diplomats. He furthered that, his Ministry will provide the conducive working environment to enhance the tasks of Ambassadors and High Commissioners in their respective missions through modern technological architecture, video conferencing on regular basis, harmonising the respective web links to missions and the use of official email address by diplomatic staff.
The Foreign Minister implored the diplomatic staff to demonstrate self confidence in executing their responsibilities. Getting to yes is not the objective of a diplomat, he explained, but begin instead with what best serves your country’s national interests and then seek to achieve a negotiating outcome as close to those requirements as possible and adopt clear red lines and do not compromise beyond them. ‘You are the great salesmen and women of Sierra Leone, we have to sell this product and we cannot sell it by sitting behind our desks but go out there and organise events and programmes to achieve your objectives’, he added. ‘Every November, all Ambassadors and High Commissioners will be meeting at Headquarters (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) on a retreat to analyse work done and plan future targets’, Dr. Kabba Concluded.
The Vote of thanks was delivered by the Ambassador Designate to the Peoples Republic of China, Chief Ernest Ndomihina.
The closing ceremony was climaxed with the presentation of certificates to participants, facilitators and organisers of the induction by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mrs. Nimatulai Bah-Chang.