The development of Sierre Leone.

The development of Sierre Leone.Sierra Leone was a British colony to which freed slaves returned in the late 1700’s. They formed a social class which hardly mixed with the indigenous people.
After Independence in 1961 government was corrupt and controlled the trade in diamonds and the profits. Little of the profit was shared out to the rest of the population.
Since 1991 there has been a civil war between the government and the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), who were dissatisfied with the government. It has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths and over 2 million people being left homeless, many fleeing to neighboring countries. The UN became involved to try and bring peace, but progress has been slow. Poverty, war and violence has become such a big problem in Sierra Leone that living there is very hard and hopeless.
In July 1999 all parties agreed to a cease-fire. But still less than a quarter of the militants have surrendered and few of the 10,000 children who were abducted during the war have been released. Sierra Leone is still a very dangerous place to live.
Population growth rate2.94%
ReligionsMuslim 60% Indigenous beliefs 30% Christian 10%
LanguagesEnglish, Mende, Temne, Krio
Infant mortality rate146.86 deaths/1000 live births
Life expectancy at birth37.4 years
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate7%
People living with HIV/AIDS170,000
Literacyfemale: 18.2%
male: 45.4%
total population: 31.4%
Population under poverty line68%
Currencyleone (SLL)
GNP Per Capita
(US$, 1997)$140
Primary and Secondary Gross Enrolment Ratio (per 100, 1990-99)Female 29
Male 43
GDP per sectorAgriculture 49%
Industry 31%
Services 21%
Child Malnutrition (% of children under 5)27%
Population with access to safe water 34%
Population per doctor20,000
Population with access to sanitization11%
The major exports are Diamonds, Rutile, Cocoa, Coffee and Fish. The main industries are Agriculture and Diamonds, although much of the potential wealth to be made from diamonds is taken away from the people of Sierra Leone due to illegal mining and smuggling.
The major imports are food (live meat etc), machinery and equipment, fuels and lubricants and chemicals.
The main thing that is stopping development is the 11 year long civil war. The Lome peace agreement, signed in July ‘99, has ended fighting in most areas. A government of national unity was formed in October ‘99, and a programme of disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration (DDR) was started. The government has set a target to eliminate hunger by 2007. Their main policy is to do with food security. This means raising production of key crops like rice, which was once a major export commodity, to previous volumes, improving quality and diversifying output. They have planned to reopen bauxite and rutile mines that were shut down during the conflict.
Sierra Leone is the least developed country in the world, this is mainly due to the extreme political instability since its independence in 1961 and the 11 year civil war which started in 1990. Even with the official ending of the civil war in 2001, violence and instability are still hindering development. The prospects for future peace and growth are better than they’ve been for many years, but to actually see improvement a lot of work needs to be done. I think in 20 years Sierra Leone will hopefully be more politically stable and violence would have been reduced greatly. Hopefully Sierra Leone will be slowly on its way to steady development.
The prospects of Sierra Leone developing in the next 50 years at any significant rate are not very likely as it is still very unstable and another civil war could easily start. The main thing is for the government to start establishing its agricultural industry again and gain proper control over diamond mining so it can begin to be able to provide for its people.
The developed country I chose to use for a comparison is Germany.
Population82.5 million
Population growth rate0.00%
Infant mortality rate4.23 deaths per 1000 live births
Life expectancy at birth78.42 years
HIV/AIDS adult prevalence rate0.1%
ReligionsProtestant 34%, Roman Catholic 34%, Muslim 3.7%, unaffiliated or other 28.3%
GNP per capita$26,000
Doctors per 1000 population3.5
Access to safe drinking waterClose to 100%
Currency Euro dollar
Germany is the largest economy in Europe and is ranked 17th in the Human Development Index. There are many examples of how Germans are much better off than the people of Sierra Leone. Firstly Germany has one of the best health systems in the world, this means that their infant mortality rate is only 4.23/per 1000 live births, which is drastically lower than the rate of Sierra Leone’s 146.86/per 1000. It also is part of the reason that their life expectancy is high - 78.5 years, compared with a very low 37.4 for Sierra Leone. Germans are free of war, corruption and political instability. They also have access to safe drinking water, plenty of food, education and doctors (part of the world class health system). This quality of life greatly comes down to the very high GNP per capita which the Germans have and the Sierra Leonean’s do not.
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The development of Sierre Leone. 7.9 of 10 on the basis of 3289 Review.