Freetown, SIERRA LEONE – In a remarkable feat of fiscal achievement, the Ministry of Land in Sierra Leone exceeded its revenue projection, raking in over Le 38.9 billion (old notes) between January and September 2023. This substantial revenue surpassed their annual target of Le 30 billion. The announcement was made by the Minister of Lands, Turad Senessie, during the presentation of the Ministry’s budget for the 2024 fiscal year to stakeholders at the Ministry of Finance Conference Room.
This impressive revenue collection of Le 38.9 billion within the first nine months primarily came from various sources, including penalty fees, building permit fees, state and land survey bills, state land sales, freehold and leasehold transactions, and regulation compliance.
For the fiscal year 2023, the Ministry’s key objectives included the development of a national land bank acquisition, and the registration of a minimum of 100,000 acres of land in both the Western Area and provinces, with at least 10,000 acres in each district. They also aimed to create a Master Plan for areas such as the Western Area, Bo, Makeni, Kenema, Port Loko, Bonthe, Koidu, and Sefadu. Additionally, the Ministry planned to establish a Land Information System for cadastral and registration services, including the development of a financial city, among other initiatives.
Even though the Ministry surpassed its 2023 revenue target before the year’s end, they have set an ambitious revenue projection of about Le 61 billion for 2024, which is double the previous year’s target of Le 30 billion.
In addition to their commendable revenue generation, the Ministry of Lands has achieved significant milestones, including the review of the Town and Country Planning Act, which was signed into law in May 2023. Furthermore, the contract for the review of the Country Planning Act has been signed by the consultant.
In the upcoming year, the Ministry will focus on important initiatives such as staff recruitment and training, job creation for young graduates, reclamation of state lands, as well as the review of the Rent Restriction Act and the Survey Act and Rules, among other objectives.
Despite their notable accomplishments, the Ministry still faces several challenges, including outdated laws and legislation, inadequate logistic support, limited budget allocation, and capacity issues.
Following the presentation, the Chairman of the session, who also serves as the Deputy Minister of Finance, Bockarie Kalokoh, commended the Ministry of Land for not only adhering to its budget ceiling of Le 4.3 billion but for surpassing revenue expectations. The presentation was subsequently adopted by the Ministry and stakeholders present at the meeting. MJB/19/10/2023