News / Africa

Former British Prime Minister Calls for Increased Investment in Sierra Leone

In a visit this week-end to Sierra Leone, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair called for increased investment in the West African country and urged religious leaders to get involved in preventing malaria.

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said he came to Sierra Leone to follow up on his initiatives to help the country.

"This is all part of the initiative we have here in Sierra Leone working alongside the President and his team to support them in their work in their priorities," said Blair. "Some of those priorities have to do with health care some to do with agriculture and energy, and of course investments and business.  We want more businesses to come into Sierra Leone to base themselves here to create jobs to create health for the people because we need to get the living standards of the country lifted.”

Former British Prime Minister Calls for Increased Investment in Sierra Leone
Former British Prime Minister Calls for Increased Investment in Sierra Leone

Mr Blair told investors the time is right to explore Africa.

My message is come and invest," said the former prime minister, "but to do so in a good way in a way that would help us with the development of the country. Iinvestment has got to be open and transparent and proper. Tthere are fantastic opportunities here. This is part of what’s happening in Africa more generally today. You know you see this in everywhere in Africa right now there is a buzz about it and an energy and we got to convert that into practical business and jobs and development.”

The former British Prime Minister said he is also looking at ways the religious community can join in the fight against malaria.

“My other charitable foundation is about the religious interfaith [community]. What we’re doing is meeting the representatives of the Christian and Muslim communities. This is part of a project where we fight malaria by mobilizing the resources and the infrastructure of the faith community so that people know how to tackle malaria, how to use the bed nets that are made available to them, how to take the right drugs how to seek the most appropriate treatment."

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair urges religious leaders to get involved in the fight against malaria.
Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair urges religious leaders to get involved in the fight against malaria.

He says his Africa Governance Initiative is training what he calls "faith ambassadors" who trainmembers of their congregations to help teach 20 families how to prevent malaria.

"So the idea," he said, "is you spread this out, and we hope to reach somewhere in the region of 70,000 families [by doing this] and if it works then we can start expanding this in different parts of Africa.”

Mr Blair was also questioned about the recent bombings in Abuja, Nigeria. He said Mr Blair extremism is an issue that must be addressed.

“Well I was in Abuja a couple of days ago myself," he said. "I am very sorry for the people there and extend my sympathy to the country and to the people affected.  I am afraid this extremism is here in many parts of the world, and we’ve got to face up to it and we’ve got to deal with it."

Before leaving Sierra Leone, Mr Blair visited a nearly 4 million dollar juice factory in the country’s first special economic zone near Freetown.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More