Agriculture and Marine resources have the potential of extricating Sierra Leoneans from poverty and hunger that are devastating eyesores of our development paradigm.
They can be the real engine for economic revitalization and poverty reduction which are crucial to peace and security.
In spite of their growth potential, they have not been given any priority by the current government. The challenge of an in-coming APC government is to reverse this trend and make these resources the bedrock of our economic growth.
Currently the agriculture sector is faced with the constraints like: subsistence production; small acreages; high post harvest wastage; limited supply of farm inputs; poor road networks; limited access to capital and limited diversification
For Marine Resources, constraints of: inadequate supervision of our coastal waters; lack of capital to engage in large scale commercial fishing; incapacity to quantify foreign fishing catches and thus depriving the country of valuable revenue and corruption in the management of marine resources have damaged the economy.
An APC government will: make local food production a matter of priority so as to bring Sierra Leone to a level of food self-sufficiency.
Also we will resuscitate commercial agriculture and effectively use our arable land for coffee, cacao and other tree crop production. This will enable our country to become once again a foreign exchange earner from our agricultural produce.
We will set up an expert task force to look into research institutions, libraries and the massive agricultural data stocked in government offices with the aim of bringing into clear perspective the use of all arable lands comprising uplands, inland valley and mangrove swamps, bolilands and the vast riverine lands of Rhombe and Tormabome.
APC will make agriculture and aqua-culture viable options, attractive enough to provide gainful and rewarding employment and at the same time improving our foreign exchange inflows.
We will give logistical and other capacity building (processing and preservation) support to artisanal fishermen to enhance their capacity to produce more for home consumption.
The APC government will pursue these goals by: making available basic agricultural inputs to stimulate food production, plantation agriculture, and animal husbandry. In this regard we will pursue a well structured agricultural loan scheme through rural banks and micro finance institutions.
Stimulating and promoting agricultural research in our universities and colleges that will lead to the revitalization of productive farming through extension services.