Despite their current challenges faced, the Sierra Leonean students and their multitude friends and sympathizers had to raise the above amount of cash, which goes as a worthy gesture of good deeds in aid to the victims.
“Our hearts naturally go to the flood and mudslide victims. We realize that they need help and it feels good helping the needy,” says SLSUC’s President, Salamatu Bella Conteh
While making the presentation, concerns were raised by Conteh including the rising standard of living in China, thus requesting for in an increase in allowances for students.
She spoke about the delay in payment of their annual allowances and thereby called on the Sierra Leone Government through the Embassy in Beijing to expedite payment in order to help them address some of their daily challenges.
On the shipment of the personal effects of students that have graduated, Conteh said this has not been done since a good number of graduated students departed China in June this year. “There has been no statement from authorities in Freetown regarding shipping their personal belongings,” she noted.
It could be recalled prior to 2007; Government was providing a 20ft container to graduating students. The trend changed to 40ft by 2008-2009, immediately the current Government and President were elected into office. The same period saw an increase in students’ allowance from a paltry 500-600 dollars annually to 1,800 dollars per student. Though students always expect more, but they over the years have spoken highly of their appreciation of such a decision under the leadership of President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma.
Responding, the Acting Head of Mission, Mrs. Kumba Alice Momoh said the Embassy is greatly impressed by the show of love and patriotism emanating from and unique to the SLSUC.
She assured that the incident of their donation has been communicated to the Authorities in Freetown and that the donation itself would be personally presented to His Excellency Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone.
“Your concerns would be shared, and I am sure the Freetown Authorities would give due consideration to each of those concerns as shared by the Union’s President,” Mrs. Momoh said and further assured the Embassy would always support lawful ventures relative to student’s academic work and stay in the People’s Republic of China.
“We will always work towards addressing the welfare of students as they are the hope of Sierra Leone. This is a Government that cares for its citizens and we know students have a crucial role in nation building. That is why we will continue to support them because without education, a nation cannot progress”. She implored students to work hard and prove their work as they start a new academic year.
Since the establishment of the diplomatic ties between Sierra Leone and China, in 1971, the later has been supporting the former in building her human resource capacity by offering scholarship to deserving students annually.