The Ministry of Finance (MoF) with its Development Partners on Friday 26th November ended a five-day workshop on the Country Portfolio Performance Review (CPPR) held at the Ministry’s Conference Hall on George Street in Central Freetown.
In his statement, the Minister of Finance, Denis K. Vandi in no uncertain terms warned executing project staffs that he would not tolerate any delay in the implementation of projects and programmes if they were to stay in employment. “Those days of extensions, ineligible expenditures, debts monitoring and evaluations are over,” the Minister stressed.
He emphasized that donor resources are the engines behind the country’s development agenda and, therefore, any fall of those engines would delay the journey of the country’s development aspirations.
Denis K. Vandi also reminded colleague Ministers and Permanent Secretaries of having the greatest responsibility to ensure projects and programmes under their respective Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are successfully implemented.
The Minister further charged that heads of MDAs would be held responsible for any unsuccessful implementation of programmes and projects.
Mr. Vandi therefore encouraged all MDAs to chart the way forward in order to take the overall performance of the portfolios from red to green.
He however conceded that there are serious challenges with the primary healthcare project, BADEA, the development of the three tertiary hospitals, Hill Side Bye-pass Road, Kuwait and other projects.
The Country Portfolio Performance Review (CPPR) is an event collectively undertaken to assess the quality and performance of the country’s donor funded projects.
The CPPR is also aimed at drawing on lessons learnt in implementing portfolio improvement plans and proffer recommendations for overcoming identified shortcomings.
All donor project partners including the World Bank, African Development Bank (AfDB), Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) among others engaged their respective Project Coordinators to identify implementation challenges of their respective projects and programmes to see how these issues are addressed with timeline of actions to be taken.
According to Mr. Vandi, delays in giving no objections to PIUs slow responses in the disbursement of funds and cumbersome procurement procedures are all pitfalls from donor partners themselves.
In an on-line connection, a representative from Thamer Alfailakawi revealed that in early January, next year, there would be a team in Sierra Leone to do the appraisal of the cancer center project in Freetown and other ongoing projects.
A representative from BADEA, Abdel-Aziz Abdel Rahman, noted that there had been challenges in the no objection documents. He therefore advised the project staffs to access the BADEA website to read through and understand some of the procedures in carrying out procurement and other documentation procedures.