INTRODUCTION: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation is the principal institution of the Government of Sierra Leone responsible for conducting the country’s foreign policy objectives. It is the principal international face and interlocutor (voice) of Sierra Leone responsible for pursuing the country’s national interest abroad, maintain friendly relations with members of the international community, and contributing to the promotion of regional and global peace, security and development.
As the principal advisory body on foreign policy within the Government of Sierra Leone, the Foreign Ministry is committed to promoting the welfare of the people of Sierra Leone at the sub-regional and global levels. It is also dedicated to the promotion and enhancement of the country’s democratic values and legitimacy in social, political and economic governance at all levels.
In view of the above, the Foreign Ministry collaborates with other Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to provide leadership and strategic direction for the formulation and implementation of foreign policy objectives of the Government.
MANDATE: The primary responsibility of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and its overseas missions is to pursue Sierra Leone’s foreign policy objectives as enshrined in Chapter II, Section 10 of the Constitution of Sierra Leone, Act No. 6 of 1991 and as the Government may dictate from time to time. These objectives are as follows:
- The promotion and protection of the National interest;
- The promotion of sub- regional, regional and inter- African co-operation and unity;
- The promotion of international co-operation for the consolidation of international peace and security and mutual respect among all nations; and respect for their territorial integrity and independence; and
- Respect for international law and treaty obligations, as well as seeking of settlement of international disputes by negotiation, conciliation, arbitration or adjudication.
FOREIGN POLICY VISION: Under the New Direction programme of Government, the Foreign Ministry places the highest premium on development and economic diplomacy as a core national interest. As a first step, the Ministry is committed to ensuring that in all its interactions with development partners, it robustly articulates a foreign policy that
de-emphasizes dependence on foreign aid in favour of promoting favourable development and trade relations consistent with evolving global trends.
FOREIGN POLICY MISSION: i. To mainstream the Foreign Service in the country’s ambition to promote peace, security and development domestically as well as within the sub- region and the global arena;
ii. To enhance Sierra Leone’s voice, legitimacy and representation in diplomacy and international relations;
iii. To promote Sierra Leone’s economic, political, social, cultural, scientific and technological interest, which are crucial elements in building a sustainable future for all Sierra Leoneans; and
iv. To work towards the realization of the foreign policy objectives set out in the 1991 Constitution of Sierra Leone.