The National Minerals Agency (NMA) Board of Directors, led by the Chairman, and Senior Management of the Agency have concluded its visit to the Regional Offices in Kenema, Bo, Makeni and Kono, from 8th to 12th June 2021.
The visits were geared towards getting firsthand information on the operations of the regional offices; to extend the Contracts of 275 Mines Compliance Officers (MCOs); to roll out the NMA Strategic Plan 2020-2025; introduce the Enterprise Geoscience Information Management Systems (eGIMS); and to interact with the four Regions.
The Chairman Ing Hadji Dabo thanked the staff for working assiduously, under very difficult circumstances to regulate the mines and minerals sector. He encouraged them to remain focused and do the right thing at all times so that Sierra Leoneans will derive maximum benefits from their mineral wealth.
He explained that the Board is responsible to oversee the efficient operation of the Agency and develop strategies for the effective management of the mines and minerals sector, which they have been doing; but pointed out that these policies and strategies will be of no use, if they are not properly implemented. He therefore appreciated the regional staff for being at the forefront in implementing the Mines and minerals Act 2009, relevant regulations and policies thereby giving meaning to their work.
In his statement, the NMA Director General, Julius Mattai, informed the regional staff that the mines and minerals sector has often been described as the bread basket of the country, and that it is the responsibility of the NMA to ensure that there is sufficient bread in the basket to support the Government’s development agenda. This, he said, is a huge responsibility for the NMA, and that staff must be mindful of that. He assured staff that the Board and Management will provide the required support and encouraged them to continue to be committed and dedicated. He pointed out that, thanks to the effort of the NMA, there has been noticeable developments in the mines and minerals sector, including an increase in number of large-scale mining companies from six to twelve, and small-scale from seven to thirteen. He further said that the mines and minerals sector continues to be a major contributor to the GDP, as well as providing employment for Sierra Leoneans. He also highlighted that with the new strategies outlined in the Strategic Plan 2020-2025 recently developed by the Agency will continue to take the mining sector to higher heights.
The Director General and his management team made presentations on the NMA Strategic Plan 2020-2025, and the Enterprise Geoscientific Information Management Systems, highlighting the roles of the staff in implementing this Strategic Plan, and informing them that Management will set performance targets for them from this plan, and appraise their performances against those targets.
The staff welcomed the visits, noting that it was very inspiring to sit with the Board of Directors and Management of the NMA to discuss matters on improving operational effectiveness and institutional efficiency. They highlighted the major challenges they face in their operations as limited logistics and overlapping mandates with other MDAs who are unduly interfering in the sector.
The Board and Management assured staff that they will collaborate with all stakeholders to address the challenges in the sector and ensure that Sierra Leoneans derive maximum benefits from their mineral resources.
@ Communication Unit
National Minerals Agency