Professor Francis Engages Turkish Press, Commends President Bio’s Role at the Antalya Diplomatic Forum

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Professor David J. Francis in an interview with Anadolu Agency has commended His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio’s Role in representing Sierra Leone on the Global Stage where he presented Sierra Leone as a nation of greater ambition. The three-day high-level event in the resort city of Antalya, brought together participants from 75 Countries, including 17 Heads of State , 80 Government Ministers , and 39 representatives from International Organizations. He said in his interview with Anadolu Agency on the margins of Diplomacy Forum in Antalya on March 12, 2022: Anadolu Agency is the forum’s global communications partner.

The Minister said that the Antalya Diplomacy Forum is a platform where world leaders in the political, diplomatic, economic and academic sectors share ideas on how to develop innovative diplomacy to address the problems that we face, from climate change, war and peace, conflict resolution and development issues.

Professor Francis in his interview said now was the time for all the regions of the world to support Africa. He called on all global actors to lead the debate for the reform of the United Nations Security Council, noting that, the UN Security Council has five permanent members and 10 non-permanent members where 70% to 75% of all the issues discussed in the council evolve around Africa.

He said no African Country is represented in the UN Five (5) Permanent Members Security Council, That he referred to as “historical injustice”. He furthered that, African Union has made a determination on this very pertinent issue by appointing Sierra Leone as the Chair of the African Union Committee of Ten on UN Security Council Reform to lead talks on reforming the UN Security Council. So, at this recording diplomacy forum, the Minister made it clear that it was not good just to come and talk but all African Heads of State and delegates translate their talks into actions.

Commending president Bio, Professor Francis noted that at the moment, under the New Direction of H.E President Rtd Brigadier Julius Maada Bio, Sierra Leone is focusing on “human capital development with three pillars: education, health, and agriculture. Today, Sierra Leone spends 22% of our GDP on education. In fact, ‘’we are in the top five countries in the world that allocate more resources to education’’.
He said that with this massive investment in education 2.5 million children are receiving free quality education. He also noted that Sierra Leone has managed the COVID-19 pandemic very well.

‘’ideally, the Ebola epidemic created social consciousness for the people to work with the government, and to comply with the social distancing and health hygiene protocols’’ and that the country is now moving into the post-COVID period where our focus is on strengthening the health system. We will definitely achieve the middle-income status in the next 10 to 20 years. I have no doubt,” he concluded.

For more information….
Membui Emmanuel,
Director, Media & Strategic Communications
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.