Sub-Saharan Africa must provide universal access to decent jobs and social services if it is to achieve decisive development progress, according to the report. This year the report shows that progress has been made in primary school enrolment, gender parity in primary school enrolment, the proportion of seats held by women in national parliament and HIV and AIDS prevalence rates. In spite of this progress, Africa still faces the challenges of addressing pervasive income inequalities, creating decent jobs, access to health and sanitation services.
Eight Goals for 2015
- 1 Eradicate extreme hunger and poverty
- 2 Achieve universal primary education
- 3 Promote gender equality and empower women
- 4 Reduce child mortality
UNDP’s Leadership on the MDGs in Sierra Leone
Despite significant recent political and socio-economic achievements, Sierra Leone will not meet its targets for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015. UNDP and other UN agencies supported an MDG Needs Assessment which gauged the human resources, infrastructure and finances required in twelve priority areas identified by the government: agriculture, education, gender, health, HIV/AIDS, the environment, transportation, energy, water and sanitation, science, innovation and technology, private sector development and job creation, and public sector management. The assessment underlined the importance of economic growth, recommending investment in agriculture, mining, fisheries and tourism and the need for a macro-economic framework and growth strategy. The total cost of investment required from 2007 to 2015 was estimated at $19 billion. Almost 60% of this cost is for infrastructure, especially building and maintaining roads.
UNDP’s coordination role of mobilizing inputs from development partners is assisting the government in the preparation of the Agenda for Prosperity, the third Generation Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP), while ensuring that the MDGs are taken into account, especially in the Human Development Pillar of the PRSP III. As a medium-term development plan, the PRSP III covers 2013-2017. It aims to bring about major socio-economic transformations for enhanced human development in line with the Sierra Leone Government’s aspirations for the country to attain middle-income status. The strategy also takes into account the need for inclusive, broad-based economic growth which is also sustainable in terms of safeguarding the environment as well as ensuring equity in distribution of income between current and future generations. It therefore emphasizes economic diversification to enhance productivity in agriculture, fisheries, manufacturing and tourism to support the increased creation of job opportunities to absorb the large pool of unemployed youth. The UN Country Team has aligned its development support to Government policy priorities including the MDGs in the UN Transitional Joint Vision (2013-2014).
UNDP works closely with the Government to strengthen national capacities of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and Statistics Sierra Leone to monitor progress towards the achievement of the MDGs in Sierra Leone and through the production of flagship knowledge products such as the National Human Development Report (NHDR) and MDG Report. Sierra Leone’s latest NHDR was released in 2007, and its 2010 MDG Report was successfully launched by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development in 2011. The Report received critical input from a number of Ministries, Departments and Agencies and support was provided to Statistics Sierra Leone for improved MDG data collection through the establishment and operationalization of an MDG Unit.
Importantly, the Government of Sierra Leone has provided effective leadership in driving progress towards the achievement of the MDGs and the Ministry of Education has undertaken awareness raising campaigns which have resulted in the general population’s greater awareness and engagement the national development agenda and the MDGs.
Latest MDG Reports
Sierra Leone has made notable progress towards the achievement of many of the MDGs, but it will not attain the majority of them by 2015. The MDGs are designed to measure development progress between 1990 and 2015. The first decade of this period was lost to the civil war, which had a devastating impact on the social and economic fabric of the country and is a major factor for not achieving the MDGs in Sierra Leone. Consequently, if the 1990 baseline was rigorously used, it would be impossible to achieve the Poverty Reduction, Education and Health MDGs, amongst others.