Sierra Leone is a small country located on the West Coast of Africa with an area of about 72,000 km2. Bounded on the West by the Atlantic Ocean, it stretches along the coastline for approximately 400 km, by Guinea on the north and north-east, and by Liberia on the south-east. Sierra Leone is divided into four main physical regions, namely coastal plains, interior lowland plains, interior plateau, and hills and mountains. The landscape of Sierra Leone is characterised by topography ranging from mountainous slopes in the northeast to low relief floodplains in the southwest.
The most extensive land cover change in Sierra Leone was the loss of woodland and
Sierra Leone has a wet tropical climate, marked by distinct wet and dry seasons. The wet or rainy season is from May to October and the dry season from November to April. The wet season has an average rainfall of 3,000 mm, with coastal and southern areas receiving from 3,000 to 5,000 mm annually and inland areas between 2,000–2,500 mm in the drier areas of the
Administratively, Sierra Leone is divided into four Regions. Eastern, Northern and Southern Provinces, and the Western Area, which is
Sierra Leone is a constitutional republic with a directly elected President and a unicameral legislature. The 1991 Constitution established three main branches of Government, namely an Executive, a Legislature and a Judiciary. The 1991 Constitution is being reviewed and a draft has been presented by the Constitutional Review Committee (CRC). The President, who is the head of state, the head of Government and the Commander-in-Chief of the Sierra Leone Armed Forces and the Sierra Leone Police, leads the executive branch. The President appoints and leads a cabinet of ministers, which Parliament approves. President Ernest Bai Koroma is serving his second and final term, which ends in 2018. Elections will be held on March 7, 2018.
Sierra Leone’s civil war (1991-2002) eroded infrastructure and human capacity throughout the country. Sierra Leone remains largely dependent upon its minerals economy, including iron, diamonds and rutile, which are major sources of foreign exchange. Sierra Leone boasts extensive natural resources, but these are under pressure from population growth, dependence on biomass for energy, water pollution, and environmentally unsound mining activities, leading to high rates of deforestation, increased rates of soil erosion, and occurrence of landslides. High dependence on agriculture and natural resources, coupled with high rates of poverty, unemployment and environmental degradation, leave Sierra Leone vulnerable disasters and climate change impacts.
The 2015 Census data indicates that the population grew from 4,976,871 in 2004 to 7,092,113 in 2015, registering an average annual growth rate of 3.2 percent. Males represented 49.1% of the total population and females 50.9%. The 2015 PHC results reflect the demographic profile of a young population, where 40.9 percent are less than 15 years, and only 3.5 percent are 65 years and above. The
The 2015 PHC results reveal that the total stock of houses in the country is 801,417. The proportion of houses in rural areas (60.6%) is higher than that in urban areas (39.4%). The regional distribution shows that Eastern region counts for 21.8 percent of the stock of houses, Northern region 34.3 percent Southern region 22.7 percent and Western Area 21.1 percent. The common material used for the construction of walls nationally is mud bricks, followed by cement
The Ministry of Health and Sanitation is the major
The education system is composed of 6 years of formal primary education, 3 years of junior secondary school(JSS), 4years of senior secondary school (SSS) and 4 years of tertiary level education(colleges, universities, polytechnics and teacher training). There are four universities in Sierra Leone: The Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone (1837); Njala University (1910 and became a university in 2005); University of Makeni (2005); and Limkokwing University of Creative Technology (2016). The 2015 Census revealed that out of the 6,589,838 people aged 3 years and above, 55.4 percent have attended school and 44.2 percent have never attended school.
The fisheries sector in Sierra Leone
Agriculture has been the backbone of the Sierra Leone economy for several decades. It contributes 40 to 50% of GDP, about 10% of exports, and provides employment to approximately two-thirds of the population. Whilst agricultural growth has significant poverty reduction effects, the sector is characterized largely by smallholders,
Sierra Leone is reasonably well endowed with energy resources, particularly biomass energy (forestry), hydroelectricity and other renewable energy sources (e.g. solar energy). Energy consumption in Sierra Leone is dominated by biomass, mainly in the form of
Sierra Leone’s mineral resources also include rutile, bauxite, ilmenite, zircon, gold and coltan. Diamond productions are concentrated in Kono, Kenema and Bo Districts. Bauxite deposits and production sites include those between Moyamba and Mano. Rutile production is distributed around Gbangbama, Sembehun, Rotifunk and Kambia. Iron ore has long been mined at Marampa and recently mining activities have begun in Tonkolili. Diamond is one of the country’s largest exports. There is