UNIMAK Congratulates Alumni

The University of Makeni is pleased to congratulate two of its alumni on their continuing academic success:

Dr Isata Mahoi - UNIMAK alumna.

Dr Isata Mahoi – UNIMAK alumna.

UNIMAK alumna Isata Mahoi has graduated with a  Ph.D in Economics from the Catholic University of Milan.

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Meanwhile UNIMAK female lawyer Victoria Adama Koroma ( the best student of the Sierra Leone Law school in 2015) becomes a Commonwealth Scholar to pursue LLM in Gender, Conflict and Human Rights Law at the Ulster University, Northern Ireland, UK for the 2016/2017 academic year.

Lebanese Ambassador Mr Nidal Yehya visits UNIMAK

Reporter MATTHEW KANU writes:

The Lebanese Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Mr Nidal Yehya has paid a courtesy call on staff and students of the University of Makeni (UNIMAK). Welcoming the Ambassador on Friday 12th August 2016 the UNIMAK Vice-Chancellor, Rev Joseph Turay said the visit of the Lebanese ambassador to UNIMAK is timely and a step in the right direction that will not only create partnership but will benefit Africa as a whole and Sierra Leone in particular.

He said the University of Makeni was established in 2005 to positively contribute to the development of Sierra Leone after the civil conflict that ravaged the country, particularly the education system. Over subsequent years there are many countries, institutions and organizations that have contributed in rebuilding the Sierra Leone education sector, and the Lebanese community is one of them. “As an institution of higher learning we want to acknowledge the contribution of the Lebanese community in the development of education in Sierra Leone, … establishing partnership with the Lebanese embassy in Sierra Leone will make higher learning a viable tool for measuring our development strides and challenges after the Ebola outbreak “ he said.

Addressing students and staff of UNIMAK Ambassador Nidal Yehya stressed the significance of his visit to the UNIMAK. “This is not only an outreach activity for me and my entourage but one that will create a bilateral relationship that will promote higher institution of learning and national development. It is only education that will increase our full potential as a nation and one that will measure up to our expectations in making the world a better place to live “ he emphasized. Ambassador Yehya promised to establish links between UNIMAK and universities in Lebanon and to assist students who are doing well but cannot afford to pay their fees.

UNIMAK Student Project Transforms Waste to Wealth

Reporter MATTHEW KANU writes:

Fridoline Neh Sama is a student of the Masters Degree in Sustainable Development at UNIMAK who has developed an initiative that will transform waste to wealth in Sierra Leone. She was inspired by her environmental sustainable development course and her lecturers to engage in a project that will not only generate income but will also create a friendly environment in Sierra Leone and Africa in general. Fridoline, a Cameroonian citizen, has lived in Sierra Leone for the past five years, and started working on this initiative over a month ago.

“This initiative was born out of curiosity about how I can use waste and become wealthy, and how to promote an eco-friendly environment” she said.  “I use just plastics waste to make jewellery and other accessories for women” she said. Fridoline said she was scared at the beginning but later realized that collecting waste plastics in the street is not a crazy or dirty thing to do. She believes that this is the only way help to change society and maintain a clean environment. “It is all about entrepreneurship. It’s creativity. We are looking for a green economy, a great future that everybody can enjoy at the end of the day.”

She stressed the need for young people to put into practice anything they positively have in mind. “Don’t be afraid to take the risk and put ideas into action. Just do it and something will happen one day. I am presently teaming up with colleague students in order to have a business plan that will attract support from donors or partners in sierra Leone and beyond, ” she noted.

A member of the team Alpha Koroma said this initiative will change the way people think about the environment particularly in rural Sierra Leone. “I am with her from a sustainable development and planning point of view, and I strongly believe that people will be interested in what she is doing” he said. The target now is to look for the appropriate technology that will enhance mass production for both male and female jewellery and accessories that will be attractive to the market.

Human Resource Development expert Veronica Kamara emphasized that Fridoline has moved from being a job seeker to a job creator. “The idea is a laudable one and new in this part of the world that will create job opportunities for many people ” she said.

UNIMAK Italian Donor Crowned In Makeni City

Reporter Emmanuel A.B. Turay writes:

Ya Alimamy N'Kolo I

Ya Alimamy N’Kolo I

The newly appointed CEO of UNIMAK’s strongest contributing donor, the St. Lawrence Foundation in Italy, has been crowned as ceremonial Chief for the municipality of Makeni, Bombali Sebora Chiefdom in recognition of the Foundation’s support of the development of the city at a ceremony held at the Makeni City Hall

In her crowning statement, the Mayor of the municipality of Makeni, Her Worship Sunkarie K. Kamara told the audience that the municipality is proud to crown the newly appointed CEO of the St. Lawrence Foundation, Chiara Zanchi, because of the numerous indirect supports the Foundation has offered to UNIMAK, which falls within her municipality, through education, scholarships, infrastructural development and entrepreneurship. The infrastructural support to UNIMAK can be seen situated at the approach to the city along Azzolini Highway, where several businesses, offices and supermarkets not only provide support to the university but also beautify the city entrance.

UNIMAK Staff with Prof. Bassoli

UNIMAK Staff with Prof. Bassoli

Her Worship the Mayor also reiterated the various community services extended to the municipality by UNIMAK including the present urban planning programme for which she visited Spain and was able to raise about two million pounds project for the city project.

“Taking into consideration all of your Foundation’s extensive support to our municipality in diverse ways, and in consultation with my Paramount Chief and traditional authorities, I hereby crown you to serve as goodwill Ambassador and ceremonial Chief for the municipality of Makeni, hereby called Ya Alimamy N’kolo I; the Mayor concluded.

Mayor Sunkarie Kamara and Prof Angela Bassoli

Mayor Sunkarie Kamara and Prof Angela Bassoli

In her acceptance speech on behalf of the CEO of St. Lawrence Foundation, Professor Angela Bassoli from the Faculty of Agriculture, University of Milan, apologised for the absence of the CEO in the ceremony due to a sudden malaria attack but expressed appreciation for the honour and recognition accorded to the foundation and most especially the CEO Ya Alimamy N’kolo I. On behalf of the foundation Prof. Angela Bassoli  pledged their continued support to the municipality in various programmes especially agro business.

The crowning ceremony was chaired by the Chief Administrator of Makeni City Council William Alpha, welcome address delivered by Pa Santigie Follah Turay and Vote of thanks by Mr. Emmanuel Turay.

Mayor Traditional Chiefs and Prof. Bassoli

Mayor, Traditional Chiefs and Prof. Bassoli

Also present at the crowning ceremony were traditional chiefs led by Pa Santigie Follah Turay, traditional society ‘sowes’, the Vice-Chancellor UNIMAK Rev. Prof. Joseph Turay ,and the Chief Administrator and Deputy of Makeni City council.

The ceremony was climaxed by traditional singing and dancing.