The President of Sierra Leone, Julius Mazda Bio has donated 3 months of his presidential Salary in order the support the free quality education programme for 1.5 million primary and secondary school children in Sierra Leone.
Maada Bio made this known on Monday 20th August 2018 at Miatta Conference Hall, Freetown during the official launching of the programme.
“I promised free education during the election and I’m here to implement it,” Bio said during the official launch ceremony.
The President also informed that the budget allocation for Education in the country has been increased.
He said; “As President, in order to demonstrate my commitment to education and in keeping with my promise, my Government has increased the budgetary allocation to education to 21% of the National Budget and several strides have already been made in so short a time to commence the implementation of the Free Quality School Education Programme.
“…the implementation of the Free Quality School Education Programme will be phased over a period of 5 years to allow us to achieve our goal. All Government and Government-assisted schools will benefit from the Free Quality School Education Programme starting from 17th September 2018.”, he said.
The programme is largely funded with support from donor partners including UK Aid, World Bank, Irish Aid, World Food Programme and UNICEF. While no financial details were provided about the overall cost of the scheme, Bio said he would donate three of his monthly salaries to it.
First Lady donates one hundred Million Leones to the Fund on behalf of the Fatima Maada Bio foundation.
VP Juldeh Jalloh pledged 50% of his salary for a total of 12months and 10 cows to support school feeding project.
Chief Minister David Francis donated three month salary.
Finance Minister Jacob Jusu Saffa donated two months of his salary to be deducted over a period of one year.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and International corporation Alie Kabba pledged his three months salary to the basket fund.
Minister of basic primary and secondary education Alpha Timbo pledged his salary of three months to the the fund.
Speaker of the house of Parliament Abass Bundy donated his salary and that of all Parliamentarians for a month.
Mayoress of Freetown Yvonne Aki Sawyer donated 50% of her three months salary spread over a year.