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Sierra Leone News: Understanding inequality

The Movement Against Inequality in Sierra Leone was launched on Tuesday 8 May 2018 aiming at building inclusive communities. During the launching ceremony two months ago disaster prone communities were invited to discuses solutions and disaster preparedness.
John Conteh is a resident of the Kroo Bay slum community. He said there is no change and their situation remains the same. They are worried about the pending rainy season.
Conteh said he came from the provinces looking for a job and opportunities four years ago. But, his situation is still bleak. He recognizes that living in Kroo Bay is risky but he despairs there’s nothing he can do for he and his family because he doesn’t have money to move.
The United Nations SDG Goal 10 advised for adoption of policies that create opportunity for everyone, regardless of who they are or where they come from. The goal highlighted that income inequality is a global problem that requires a global solution ranging from improving regulation of financial markets and institutions, sending development aid where it is most needed and helping people migrate safely so they can pursue opportunities.
Charles Lahai, Chair of the Movement Against Inequality in Sierra Leone, said they are seeking to overcome inequality in the country starting with slums and disaster prone communities. He said with experience from other countries, they decided to develop a communiqué explaining the gaps between the rich and poor and that they had highlighted areas of intervention. Lahai said they had converged communities, persons with disability in understanding inequality and power dynamics because as a nation in as much as it citizens are poor, the element of deprivation stands tall.
He said for over 50-years of mining the country cannot boast of quality education, good roads, water, and electricity, among others. He said it is important for communities to engage with service providers to ensure they are able to identify their social services and benefits from their taxes.
Juliette Anderson said “inequality is discriminatory.” She is deeply informed of reality of inequality especially among poor communities. She said poverty has been the order of the day with huge gaps between rich and poor, the educated, the unemployed and salary scales among even those in employment.
Nuru Deen, one of the Coordinators at OXFAM International, described poverty as man made actions as a result of the non-availability of basic needs, which according to him are linked with inequality. He said despite the fact that they are not expecting a perfect world but they need equal rights to education, food, health care, clean water, health, housing among many basic needs.
The OXFAM Coordinator said ‘unequal power’ relation and denial of rights to speech, access to national resources distribution, etc., form part of what constitutes inequality. He said the present economic system of the world has lead to inequality because less than 1 percent of the world population has the world wealth. Mariama Brima (not her real name) stays at Grey Bush in the West end of Freetown. She highlighted if the world was that equal and just for all as been preached, God would have ensure even distributions of wealth, resources and land size to all countries irrespective of it location, continent or region. MK/4/6/18
By Mohamed Kabba ,
Twitter: @chikakabba
Wednesday June 06, 2018.

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