Mines Committee visits Sierra Diamonds Ltd in Tongo

Members of Parliament from the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on Mines and Mineral Resources, Wednesday 30 October 2019, visited Sierra Diamonds Limited. The Committee arrived at the Tonguma campsite of the Sierra Diamonds Limited, an exploration company operating in Tongo, Lower Bambara Chiefdom in the Kenema District. The leader of delegation, Honourable Musa Fofana, noted that the Mines Committee wanted a firsthand experience with the work the company was doing and its effects on residents of the host town. “We are not here to witch-hunt you but to have a clearer understanding of your establishment and your challenges so that we could find a common ground for a win-win situation between the your company and our country,” Fofana said. He added that mining companies were useful in the country and that the mineral resources of the country had been helping to the boost the economy by contribution 24% to the country’s GDP, except recently when that situation took a backward trend. “With our visit and intervention in different areas of concerns from your company and the locals, there is hope for the mining sector in the not too distant future,” Hon. Fofana pointed out. Monitoring by the MPs during the visit centered on different standards of operation, ranging from safety measures put in place by the company for its workers and visitors, the implementation of the local content policy in terms of employment, tax compliance, environmental safety, methods of paying surface rent to land owning families and observance of social responsibility, etc. The Committee on Mines did not raise any serious concerns that would fault the activities of the company.

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