Institutional engagement has been the core strategy for engaging decision-makers and stakeholders to discuss salient issues affecting the transparency and accountability sector in Sierra Leone. Our findings suggest significant progress in the health sector governance space. The multi-stakeholder approach in every tier of health administration and policy formulation has boosted the sector. It is primarily evident in the devolution of responsibilities and the inclusion of local government authorities in the administration of primary health care at district and ward levels. We also found that the additional budgetary support from the central government to the health sector, coupled with the inadequate parliamentary oversight on health, raised funding challenges and aided the industry’s requisite policy formulation and development.
The BudgIT Sierra Leone team visited the Director of Non-Governmental Organization at The Ministry of Planning and Economic Development (MoPED) to share the organization’s mission and discuss the Ministry’s recent methodology and limitations. We met with Director Eric Massally, Mohamed Bangura (Special Assistant to the director) and gave him our report on accountability in the health sector, which showed the gaps and what could be done to fix them.
Impressed with the report, he suggested we share the copy with other ministries, especially the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, the Ministry of Finance, and Local Councils.
Addressing the BudgIT SL team, Director Eric Massally shared, ” We hope more NGOs can be more solution-oriented like BudgIT since the government cannot be everywhere at the same time; you have highlighted the health sector gaps and made recommendations to mitigate them.”
He also shared that while the government demands that NGOs be accountable, it also has a primary responsibility to be accountable to NGOs and the public.
Photo: Report presented to the Director of NGO at MoPED.
He also stated that they would go through the report and see the gaps that the government will tackle and provide better health facilities for the citizens, and at the same time, they will invite us for further discussions on the report. He promised to work on the report’s recommendations and connect us with other civil organization groups in the health sector.
He encouraged BudgiT Sierra Leone to keep up the excellent work and to reach out to them whenever they required technical assistance, information, or networking with other non-governmental organizations. Our goal is that the Health Sector Accountability Report will further strengthen deep conversations with stakeholders on how to address the pressing issues around the health sector in Sierra Leone. See the full report here
Photo: Group photo after the discussion: L-R, Special Assistant to the Director (MoPED), Program Officer (BudgiT-SL), Director of NGOs (MoPED), and Country Lead (BudgiT-SL).