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Sunday, May 22, 2016

Beauty and Blemishes of Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone in the beginning, its Civil War, Blood Diamonds, Ebola and Illegal Fishing Issue, Sierra Leone’s beauty and blemishes make this African country what she is today, resilient.



Sierra Leone in the beginning


Sierra Leone’s beauty and blemishes make this African country what she is today, resilient.The British set up a trading post near present day Freetown in the 17th century. Originally, the trade involved timber and ivory, but later it expanded into slaves. 

Following the American Revolution, a colony was established in 1787 and Sierra Leone became a destination for resettling black loyalists who had originally been resettled in Nova Scotia. The capital, Freetown, was founded as a home for repatriated former slaves in 1787.

After the abolition of the slave trade in 1807, British crews delivered thousands of Africans liberated from illegal slave ships to Sierra Leone, particularly Freetown. The colony which already included native ethnic groups of Temne, Mende, Limba, Kono, Mandingo, and Loko. The Kriole ethnic groups are descendants of freed Jamaican slaves.



Sierra Leone Civil War, Blood Diamonds and Ebola

Independence was attained in 1961. Democracy is slowly being reestablished after the civil war from 1991-2002 that resulted in tens of thousands of deaths and the displacement of more than 2 million people, about one third of the population.

During its civil war, it is estimated that Sierra Leone conflict diamonds represented about 4% of the world's diamond production. Conflict diamonds or blood diamonds are diamonds that originate from areas controlled by forces opposed to legitimate and internationally recognized governments, and are used to fund military action arming rebel groups and terrorizing civilians.During its civil war, it is estimated that Sierra Leone conflict diamonds represented about 4% of the world's diamond production. 

Conflict diamonds or blood diamonds are diamonds that originate from areas controlled by forces opposed to legitimate and internationally recognized governments, and are used to fund military action arming rebel groups and terrorizing civilians. Diamonds fuel Africa's civil war conflicts.

In March 2014, the closure of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Sierra Leone marked the end of more than 15 years of peacekeeping and political operations in Sierra Leone. The government stated its priorities are furthering development including recovering from the Ebola epidemic, creating jobs, and stamping out endemic corruption.

From 2014 to current, Sierra Leone declared a state of emergency to attack the deadly Ebola outbreak in West Africa that continues into 2016, killing more than 11,000 people in the region. 

The World Health Organization confirmed a second case of Ebola in the Tonkolili District of Sierra Leone on January 20, 2016. The patient was a relative of the person whose death from Ebola was confirmed on January 15, 2016. Sierra Leone was previously declared Ebola transmission free on November 7, 2015.
Following the American Revolution, a colony was established in 1787 and Sierra Leone became a destination for resettling black loyalists who had originally been resettled in Nova Scotia.
The Ebola epidemic, which began in Guinea in December 2013, infected more than 28,000 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Before Ebola, the countries were three of the poorest in the world.

Sierra Leone Ebola epidemic threatened to stop the progress of the country’s economic and social growth. The challenges of endemic corruption, high youth unemployment (more than 40% of Sierra Leone's population is under 15 years old), inadequate services, and widespread poverty are still critical barriers to progress.

Sierra Leone Illegal Fishing Issue


Opportunities for aqua farming are plentiful in Sierra Leone's marine environment and the inland water bodies. Sierra Leone’s industrial fisheries are significantly export-oriented and the fleet ownership is foreign based. According to Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) website has developed partnerships with local communities, the Government of Sierra Leone and local and international organizations working to combat pirate fishing.

Eight Interesting Facts About Sierra Leone


·        Official Name: Republic of Sierra Leone
·        Capital: Freetown
·        Population:  6.1 million
·        Size: 71,740 sq km or 27,699 sq miles
·        Languages Spoken:  English, Krio (Creole language derived from English) and a range of African languages
·        Major religions: Islam and Christianity
·        Life expectancy: 48 years for men, 49 years for women
·        Average age: 19 years old

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