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Showing posts from April, 2020

Ethnicity, Development, and Democracy on Independence Day

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A month before Sierra Leone marked 59 years of independence on April 27, the Smallholder Commercialization Program or SCP quietly closed its doors on March 31. According to the Global Agriculture & Food Security Program website, the program with a $50 million price tag was a success.

The project reached 377,412 poor Sierra Leoneans, of whom about 47 percent are women. All told, the SCP is expected to benefit a total of 500,000 people, one-half of them women.

The project improved drainage services on 1,150 hectares for a total of 5,256 water users and aims to reduce the supply-demand gap in rice as well increase incomes for 100,000 farm households.

The SCP also rehabilitated 6,300 hectares of tree crops: 2,800 hectares of cocoa, 3,000 hectares of new oil palm, and 500 hectares of cashew. The project is piloting climate change technologies, such as rainwater harvesting.

In addition, the project established financial services associations and community banks resulting in 34,025 cl…

Abou Whyte, one of Sierra Leone's greatest folk music artists, dies at 76

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Abou Whyte, popular folk artist and lead vocalist for Muyei Power, died in New Jersey, USA, this week from complications related to the coronavirus disease. He was 76 years old. According to AYV Newspaper, the veteran Sierra Leonean musician has been laid to rest.

Whyte was born in the Fourah Bay community in Freetown, said VertexMedia SL, who shared one the last images of the singer on stage. Click here to watch a biopic of the late singer.

Whyte belongs to the generation of big bands like Afro National, Sabanoh 75, and Super Combo. He is fondly remembered for songs like 'Good Morning Sierra Leone,' 'Jakitomboi,' 'Yamba Sowe,' and 'Wali Bena'

The musician's career reportedly started with the Merry-Go Jazz Band in 1964, after which he joined the Orchestra Muyei Power Dance Band, formed by music promoter Abu Sillah in 1971.
In February 2018, Soundway Records, founded by label owner Miles Cleret, posted a full album stream of "Muyei Power - Sierra …