After their assessment and consultative visit to the border villages of Yenga and Nongoa, the Secretary General of the Mano River Union (MRU), Ambassador Medina Wesseh, has disclosed that there will be no development in a country without peace.
Ambassador Wesseh was speaking to journalists at a press conference on 2nd February 2021 at their office in Freetown.
She noted that “peace is a quintessential element and core variable which must underpin any social or economic and even political development. This holds as self-evidence that without peace there can be no development.”
Madam Wesseh said peace researchers have indicated that the condition for moving closer to peace – at least not drifting closer to violence, is to focus on the integration of human society especially in a border community with the same culture, speaking the same languages and having a high rate of intermarriage as is the case of Yenga in Sierra Leone and Nongoa in Guinea.
The MRU Secretary General underscored that their visit “required us firstly to clearly assess and understand the realities at the border and secondly with the involvement of the relevant local actor and the joint border management team we sought to identify some of the issues with the view to design strategies for peaceful coexistence.”
She added: “We worked well with their Member of Parliament of Constituency 002, the MRU joint border security and confidence building unit, MARWOPNET, Makona River Organisation, the local authorities from both Guinea and Sierra Leone to ensure firm commitment to community peace and security along the borders of our Member States.”
Madam Wesseh maintained that they are pleased with the level of cordiality and respect between the two countries evidenced by the warm and cordial reception she said was exhibited by the President of Guinea, Professor Alpha Conde towards the delegation dispatched by President Julius Maada Bio.
In this regard, and as part of the immediate action to be undertaken, the MRU Secretariat, within the framework of its cross-border security cooperation of community engagement, will continue to remain engaged with stakeholders of Yenga in particular and the communities in the MRU’s Parrot’s Beak, including Nongoa , Koidu and Foya.