Fambul Tok’s desire to bring the people closer to governance and to involve them in all round planning begins to take root in Peje chiefdom. In collaboration with its partners, Inclusive District Committee, religious leaders, section chiefs, chiefdom speaker, members of the chiefdom committee, CSO representatives, youth leaders, representatives of the ward development committee members and their councilors, Peace mothers and religious leader’s the chiefdom’s peoples planning process kicked off earlier in the year. The meeting gave Fambul Tok the approval to cascade the PPP in the chiefdom.
‘We want to see our chiefdom developed and dwell in peace and harmony.’ This was the impression given by the people of Peje West chiefdom as they held consultations for the development of their peoples planning process. Peje West chiefdom is part of constituency 009 in Kailahun district in eastern Sierra Leone. The constituency is made up of Peje West and Yawie.
The Paramount Chief, Dr. Shamsu Mustapha Ngebeh (VI), was crowned on the 25th January, 2020. The chiefdom went through elections for leadership and the contest was characterised by divisive politicking that undermined the long standing common ancestral ties and enviable unity in the chiefdom. There was one death in the elections violence.
“Fambul Tok’s intervention into our communities is very timely as there are serious cracks that need urgent fixing for promoting peace, effective governance and development. We are very confident that this new strategy of inclusive People’s Planning Process will help to promote peace, healing and sustainable development in our chiefdom”: explained Pastor Jonathan K. Musa during the consultations at Bunumbu on the 20th February 2020.
Prior to this period, Peje West had had a fair share of bitter experiences both during the gruesome rebel war and the Ebola epidemic. “There are vestiges of ruined infrastructures and deep seated grudges among our community members. I accepted the divine call to assume leadership with the conviction that my people, more than ever, needed my vast experience, knowledge and skills in mobilizing the much needed human and material resources for the positive transformation of our chiefdom for the common good of the average citizen and the district at large. This dream remains alive! Therefore, the coming of Fambul Tok and its partners with this inclusive approach to healing and sustainable development is very timely for Peje West Chiefdom”: Paramount Chief Ngebeh (VI).
Voting by raising hands to accept the process
“We the people of Peje West chiefdom want to lead in our own recovery from conflicts and address future crisis prevention – and we have demonstrated that we can. We want to be the ones to determine our needs and goals and to be participants in the larger crisis prevention efforts in our chiefdom”: said Peje West mammy queen.
In the aftermath of the conflicts resulting from the EVD scourge, as a chiefdom and community, we need to continue our efforts to prevent future health related crises and ensure social cohesion and recovery, through continued community engagement, as well as inter-communal and intra communal surveillance on early warning signs, while at the same time, helping to solve our petty community grievances, she said.
In that light we stay committed to facilitating conflict resolution within our communities and redouble our efforts at working with the Community Welfare and Mediation Committees to address existing community conflicts
We also want to maintain increased awareness, education and communication on infectious disease outbreak (Ebola) and other health related matters in our communities with emphasis on ensuring greater participation of women and youth. To provide basic education services across Peje West Chiefdom. Effort will be made to ensure that all schools operate in an Ebola-free environment that is safe and supportive of pupils, students, teachers and visitors, they listed as part of their priorities.
Now with the COVID 19 pandemic, our resolve remains the same. We shall be steadfast in upholding the EVD protocols and any additional one that are useful in prevention of COVID 19 infections. Our by laws are being invoked.
The main trust of our plan will be on community resilience and crises prevention; water and sanitation; education; and agriculture with focus on our cash crops of coffee and cacao. Upland and Swamp land farming, Small scale village savings and loan scheme, Cultivation of cacao and coffee, Rearing of domestic animals on small scale, Adult literacy Programme for women, Feeder road construction and maintenance tools.