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Parliament says toll-gate price increment is imminent, despite labeling the initial ratified agreement a bad one

Honorable Bashiru Silkie, Deputy Leader of Government Business 1 and Chairman of the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on Works and Public Assets, in an interview with our correspondent has informed that the toll price increment is imminent and largely dependent on provision of financial or traffic data report that can justify their proposed increase.

Hon. Silikie continued that given forex rates and inflation, an increment will not be farfetched but it remains to be seen at which rate it may be placed.

Honorable Silkie stated that the committee is aware of public calls to reject the proposed increment entirely, however, he reiterated that the increment would not be rejected or implemented without proper approval, in compliance with legal tenets.

The committee has directed the Ministry of Works, the Sierra Leone Roads Authority and the China Railway Seventh Group (CRSG) to redraft and resubmit their proposal for further discussion. If the proposal is submitted within the stipulated time frame(1st March 2024), the review and implementation of the increased prices can be effected.

Honorable Silkie expressed his concern regarding the negative impact of such situations, which he attributed to unfavorable agreements made in the name of the Sierra Leonean people. He highlighted that he had voiced his concerns during the initial agreement process in 2015, which had been disregarded.

He concluded that the review of the toll gate agreement itself should be seriously considered in the future. However, he emphasized that the government must not be seen to be disregarding and overturning agreements easily, as this could erode investor confidence.

Watch the full interview here:


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