The Deputy General Manager(DGM) of the National Tourist Board of Sierra Leone (NTB), Madam Fatmata Abe-Osagie, on behalf of the NTB and its line Ministry, the Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs (MTCA) has called on the Government of Sierra Leone, Implementing Partners and citizens alike to capacitate the NTB financially in order for the institution to be properly equipped with all the requite materials and wherewithal in fighting this National Menace called Sargassum or Sea Algae better known as Seaweed which has abruptly rendered our beautiful and pristine Beaches in a state of insanity and abhorrence. She curled that, there is a sophisticated, scientific and modern machine called the “Seaweed Barber” which has the potential to clean up thousands of tons of Seaweed within a short period of time. She pleaded to the Government and Implementing Partners to help purchase the Seaweed Barber and finally bring the issue of Seaweed to rest.
The DGM made this passionate appeal on Wednesday, 6th September 2017 at the National Television Broadcaster, the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Cooperation (SLBC) on a popular viewed program called the MPPA hour hosted by the Ministry of Political and Public Affairs. The program was titled “Seaweed as a national concern and it was moderated by Mr. Muctarr Tejan Cole(T.J Cole), Communications Officer of MPPA.
Madam Fatmata Abe-Osagie, pointed out that, albeit the NTB is short of finance, but the institution is doing everything possible in order to ensure that the seaweed is cleaned off our beaches, more especially the Aberdeen-Lumley Beaches which happens to be the hub of Tourism in the country. ” to clean a 3.2km long beach is not an easy task, we are short of funds, but we cannot afford to allow the seaweed take over the barometer of Tourism in the country (Aberdeen-Lumley Beaches), that is why both wings of the Beach Marshall (Security and Sanitation wings) including staff of the NTB are doing frantic efforts in cleaning the seaweed and return our beaches to their beautiful and pristine statuses” she noted.
She reiterated that, Staff of NTB including the Beach Marshalls are working relentlessly and tirelessly 24/7 in the cleaning of the Beaches so that Tourists as well as Citizens could visit the Beaches and have the expected blissfulness and merriment they are expecting from the Beaches.
She disclosed that, Seaweed is a Universal issue and that, many countries the world over are experiencing this quagmire, especially countries within the coastal areas, adding that, “we want the general public to know that, Sierra Leone is not the only country experiencing Seaweed, also the Seaweed has no harmful effect on the environment and human body. It has no negative implications on human health” she reaffirmed.
She concluded by calling on the Government, and all implementing partners to give a helping hand to the NTB in fighting the Seaweed but more so to help *purchase the Seaweed Barber which she termed as the “Panacea” to the Seaweed menace.* She also called on all Patriotic and Peace loving Citizens to manifest sign of patriotism by help to clean the beaches as the NTB is preparing to organize a seaweed general cleaning day.
Also present at the televised program was Mr. Paul Lamin, Assistant Deputy Director General of the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) who also hammered home very important points pertaining the causes, effects and cleaning of the Seaweed.