The Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, Rt. Honorable Mohamed Sidie Tunis has pledged the sum of 10 billion Leones about ($500,000 US dollars) over five years, to fund a scholarship scheme targeted mostly at indigent Sierra Leonean students as his contribution to improving education in the country.
Speaking at the beginning of debate and quiz activities between the students of the Fourah Bay College and Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM), which are part of the sensitization townhall programme organized on the sidelines of ECOWAS Parliament Parliamentary Seminar in Freetown, Sierra Leone, the Speaker said the schorlaship scheme will be managed by a foundation he runs with his wife, tagged ‘the One Love Salone Foundation’.
“This investment in education is borne out of our conviction that it is the right thing to do in order to contribute towards equipping our students with the capacity to compete globally”, the Speaker told the more than 200 students who attended the programme.
In addition, he said that 67 students have already been identified by the Foundation to benefit for the 2023/24 academic session and that those who excelled will each be presented with a laptop, in addition.
Dr Sidie Tunis also announced that the Foundation was mulling the possibility of creating a special category under the scheme for medical and law students, among others, in order to contribute to improving the professional development of students undertaking these courses.
Rt. Honorable Tunis, who is on the threshold of completing his four-year tenure as the Speaker of the Fifth Legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament, announced that the preparatory processes have been completed for the launch of the ECOWAS Youth Parliament.
He expressed optimism that this parliament, which is part of efforts to bring parliament closer to the citizens through the youths, will be realized during the four-year tenure of the Sixth Legislature, which is expected to begin in March 2024.
Speaker Tunis extolled President Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone for introducing a scholarship programme for indigent students, noting that it has succeeded despite the initial cynicism of some people.
The debate and quiz challenge organized by the Parliament were worn by the Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM