SIERRA LEONE WEAK ECONOMIC PARITY FROM AN ECONOMIST POINT OF VIEW

Well.. well…well…, I join my sisters who just clearly articulated a good chunk of the underlying problems creating the stagnation our country has carved for itself. I am deliberately emphasizing this term carved because the quagmire that has become of our country, cannot be exclusively isolated to the fault of politicians alone. After all, they were voluntarily elected to serve.
I wanted to commend @⁨~Ellie J Juxon Smith⁩⁩ for a point I endorse; that we were not matured enough to go into Democratization in 1996
I state this case to reinforce your submission that it was not the right time and environment to hold elections in the middle of an incomplete civil war. Those civil societies who were propagating election before peace instead of the inverse, may have just gotten what they asked for. That decision was not democratic because those who opted for making peace secondary to elections were vying to speed up the installation of democracy in a country half of which were in rebel control in the middle of a civil war. Those decision makers did not bear the brunt of their myopic decisions, nor realize the strategic political blunder until the RUF started cutting the hands of innocent civilians, men, women, children and even the soldiers in a long sleeve/shortsleeve brutal bloody campaign. I wish they had decided on a broad coalition government bringing all the warring interests to manage what was still a precarious situation.
@⁨~Fatmata Williams⁩⁩, when I read Daron’s book why nations fail, I noticed the mention of Sierra Leone several times and it gave me a compelling reason to plough through and try to pick what I could from his ideas. I ended up calling him through my own networks at MIT to have a dialogue with him.
What he told me to understand was the relationship between Nogales Mexico and Nogales Arizona. Luckily, as a resident of the State of Arizona, I could relate to the differences between the twin towns located side by side in different countries.
It all came down to efficiently run institutions and systems versus inefficient systems. Take your pick on inefficiency, poorly staffed and poorly run institutions, corruption, political patronage, weak compliance, underfunded government programs, underpaid public sector workers, and more importantly the inability to adapt to the pace of rapid changes in the sub region and the world.
I was educated to understand and confront the truth about Sierra Leone by the late Ian Macleod  who expressed concerns about the level of resource constraint in Sierra Leone. He boldly declared that Sierra Leone was poor. That has been a constant but ignored fact our nation is unwilling to accept and contend with. We are poor, period. It’s my opinion but I do have supporters. We do not produce anything the world does not have elsewhere. We produce at very low grade, low volume and most of the royalties are pennies to the dollar. In the third quarter of 2023, Sony sold over 50 million Play station 5 video consoles. That is production. That is a single sources of tax revenue for the Japanese government. What did we produce in the last quarter of 2023; a political violence that threatens the interest of foreign investment and yet we expect miracles.
It is against this backdrop that we can draw the contrast and understand why our expenditure outweigh revenues. Our population has increased and our productivity per capita has inversely declined. This permanent state of deficit goes as far back as 1972 when even the leaders then were running a lean government.
@⁨~Ellie J Juxon Smith⁩⁩, my sister don’t give up hope. It’s going to take a class of problem solvers not politicians to fix the broken system. Our systems and institutions need to be rebuilt from scratch. We need to focus on generating new streams of revenue and spend conservatively with a focus on improving the quality of life. Revenue is the greatest problem we face to this day. Governments are trying to patch a problem that needs serious brain power. We need a forecasted plan for an estimated GDP of $12 billion or create a minimum earning power of $1,800 for 52% of the population to see a change in our country, its economy and the people. Until then, Happy New Year my people. We will come back next year with the same complains. *It’s the economy.*

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