Seven National Coordinators of the Civil Peace Service (CPS) Net work from the Democratic Republic (DR) of Congo, Cameroon, Liberia and Sierra Leone between 27th and 30th August, 2018 converged at Freetown for a four-day Peer Learning Meeting for BFTW CPS Coordinators. The meeting took place at the conference room of the Council of Churches in Sierra Leone (CCSL), located on King Herman Road in Freetown and the following coordinators were in attendance:
– Mavinga Kumba Marie Jose and Odile BulaBula Mbila from the D.R. Congo;
– Nekdem Fandio Florentine and Njifenji Emmanuel Francis from Cameroon;
– Lancedell Mathews from Liberia;
– Dr. Sheku Kamara and Adenike Cole based in Sierra Leone.
One of the Coordinators of the CPS programme in Sierra Leone; Dr. Sheku Kamara thanked his colleagues for coming to Sierra Leone noting that the level of energy exerted into the entire event was wonderful.
He explained that when the coordinating team from Sierra Leone learnt that the meeting would be held in Sierra Leone; they were enthusiastic to show their counter parts great things like the country’s hospitality, kindness and the unique history of Sierra Leone and her citizenry. He stressed that despite the negative things always being said about Sierra Leone, he believes that there are many good things that are worth noting about the country. Dr. Kamara further disclosed that topics discussed during the meeting were well in place and all institutions and persons contacted also to share their experiences with the coordinators did great jobs.
He concluded that the experiences shared, lessons leaned from what other countries are doing. She maintained that the topics discussed especially the elections in Sierra Leone and Liberia, social cohesion, and civic education among others were very helpful to them as Cameroon and DR Congo would be conducting their elections this year. Lancedell Mathews from Liberia said that the Peer learning gives the context within which they as coordinators work and it guides them to focus on specific issues they may want to address in their respective countries. He said the meeting had a very unique approach as opportunities were given to other key players outside of the network to enhance the knowledge of coordinators.
“A range of pertinent issues had been looked at during these four days. I have had reflections on how to improve on activities in the Liberian chapter of CPS. This kind of interaction will go a long way in helping us to achieve the objectives for which the network was set up” he said
Other coordinators like Odile BulaBula Mbila from DR Congo, Njifenji Emmanuel Francis from
Cameroon all rated the meeting as ‘excellent’ noting that such interactions will help them in no uncertain tears to be good coordinators in their respective countries. The visiting team promised that whatever they learnt from these engagements in Sierra Leone will be taken back home especially the efforts made by CPS Sierra Leone to advocate for peaceful elections and the need for social cohesion in post elections Sierra Leone. In between the program, attendees visited other partners of the Network like the Sierra Leone Adult Education Association (SLADEA), Culture Radio, AGEH and trip to the Peace Museum of Sierra Leone.