Babadi Kamara Injects Transparency into Timber Trade
By Ibrahim Tarawallie
Since his appointment by President Julius Maada Bio as the Sole Agent of Government in the export of timber in 2018, Babadi Kamara of Leadway Trading Company Sierra Leone Limited has ensured transparency and accountability in timber trade.
Mr. Kamara’s outstanding performance over the past two years has earned him respect and admiration from those involved in the timber business and the presidency.
Before 2018, transparency and accountability was not visible in the export of timber. Few people were getting the lion share from timber export with little or nothing going to government coffers.
Transparency and industry are two cardinal qualities that have always characterized the public life and actions of Babadi Kamara and he continues to acquit himself in public positions with distinction.
His performance has helped him to establish a golden name and reputation for himself, and in the process, draw acclamations from many citizens.
When the announcement was made in June 2018 that Mr. Babadi Kamara was to serve as the sole agent of Government in respect of timber export, it was clear that the president made a bold and wise decision.
Many, including the President knew he was going to hit the ground running and to impress as always, and he has delivered as expected. He did not disappoint the President and the people of Sierra Leone.
No wonder he was reappointed by President Bio in February this year to continue serving as the sole agent of the government because of the transparent way in which he carried out his responsibility, coupled with the staggering financial returns in revenue from timber export.
A release from State House dated February 20, 2020, noted the satisfaction of government and the President with regards the way Mr. Kamara had carried out the task giving to him.
The release furnished the public with the staggering amounts that have so far been generated from the exports of timber. “A total of US $ 37,050,000 has been realized from the levies on the export of 13,000 containers of timber and US $ 90,000 recouped from previous exporters being payment for cities. Out of these amounts, US 4,640,000 has been raised for reforestation and US $32,500,000 transferred to the Consolidated Revenue Fund. The US $ 32,500,000 has been part of the budgetary resources used to finance Government programmes,” the release stated.
It is worth noting that Mr. Kamara is never going to deviate or meander from his impressive track record, which he showed during the first assignment. He is service and delivery focused and will always remain so. Sierra Leoneans should be confident that they are now in a position to maximize the flower of what comes out of their natural resources in relation to timber with Mr. Kamara at the helm.