A global financier and philanthropist, George Soros, has given his strong support to the Sierra Leone government in the extractive industry.
At a press conference on Sunday at the Bintumani hotel in Freetown, Mr Soros said he would assist President Koroma in the extractive industry to ensure that the natural resources benefited the people and not the rulers.
The philanthropist, who is founder and chairman of the Open Society Institute (OSI), said his foundations promote the creation of open and democratic societies based upon the rule of law, market economies, transparent and accountable governance, freedom of the press, and respect for human rights.
Mr Soros disclosed that his organisation in collaboration with UNDP had set up a capacity peace building fund to help developing countries build their own intellectual capacity.
The global financier maintained that, “we recognized that it is the President who is responsible for the well being of his people”. Because of this, he said, the people had high expectations.
The 80th world richest man added that, “Freetown is a city which provides a great potential for tourism but it will take time to get its accomplished”.
George Soros supported educational radio programmes in Mongolia and later contributed $100 million to provide Internet access to every regional university in Russia.
Soros spent $50 million to help the citizens of Sarajevo endure the city’s siege during the Bosnian war, funding among other projects include a water-filtration plant that allowed residents to avoid having to draw water from distribution points targeted by Serb snipers.
Most recently he has provided $50 million to support the Millennium Villages initiative, which seeks to lift some of the least developed villages in Africa out of poverty. By Abibatu Kamara