The Regional Rice Value Chain Project (RRVCP) in the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security in a meeting with stakeholders in Torma Bum Chiefdom Bonthe District, has officially handover the contractors for the rehabilitation of storage facilities and market stores to the Paramount chief and other chiefdom authorities on Tuesday, 2nd August, 2022.

Speaking at the meeting, the Project Coordinator of Regional Rice Value Chain Project (RRVCP), Abdulai Bun Wai, informed the gathering that the significance of the meeting was to formally introduce the contractors who have been hired by his project management unit to deliver key infrastructural facilities as part of the project mandate.

Mr Wai used the opportunity to update the stakeholders of Tormabum that the Rice Value Chain Project is divided into two broad categories, the farm support infrastructures which constitute the rehabilitation of two storage facilities, construction of one store and rice milling facilities as well as a drying floor.
The other component is farm production which deals with cultivation, processing and marketing.Similarly, construction work on a modernized community market at Tormabum is also in progress.

The Project Coordinator pleaded with the Paramount Chief and the various agribusiness companies occupying the dilapidated storage facilities to relocate to other building temporarily within one-week so that the contractors would commence operations immediately.

On his part, the Paramount Chief of Bum Chiefdom Bonthe district, Hon. Alex J.J. Kainpumu II reiterated that his chiefdom’s total support to the project while expressing his profound thanks and appreciation to the Management Unit of the Regional Rice Value Chain for their hard work despite the challenges.

PC Kainpumu called on both the Abhajar Rice Development Company and the West African Rice Company to give-up the storage facilities for rehabilitation as it is for the development of the chiefdom and the entire country.

Representatives from Abhajar Rice Development Company and the West African Rice Company Yayah A. Kamara and Ibrahim Conteh welcomed the refurbishment initiative of the said facilities by the Government of Sierra Leone through RRVCP. As partners, they would pledge their fullest cooperation with the project team and the Bum Chiefdom Authorities.

Receiving the contractors, the Paramount Chief cautioned that his administration has zero tolerance for theft, especially stealing of construction materials meant for the chiefdom projects, and called on the them to purchase local construction materials like sand, stones, boards and sticks from the chiefdom people as well as to employ young people in the chiefdom both skilled and unskilled.

The Irrigation and Civil Engineer, of the Regional Rice Value Chain Project, Alhaji Mohamed Sesay assured the stakeholders of rigorous monitoring of the work to ensure that the quality of work meets the project expectations.

Construction of the Tormabum periodic market was awarded to the Datum Line International Company Limited, contract was signed in May, 2022. Completion of this project is expected in eight months’ period after signing. Similarly, the Construction of one storage facilities will be done by the Ram Jalloh Constructions and General Services. Official signing of the contract took place in July and is expected to be completed within eight months. Meanwhile, the rehabilitation of two stores will be undertaken by the Aminata Frazer Constructions and Engineering Services, contract signed in July and completion period will be six months after signing.

The meeting was climaxed by site visitation and conducted tour of the facilities was carried out to enable contractors have a fair knowledge of the sites and nature of work in hand.

The RRVCP project is funded by the Islamic Development Bank, BADEA, and the Government of Sierra Leone, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security serving as the implementing agency.