US Ambassador says goodbye to Sierra Leone

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Sierra Leone Telegraph: 19 February 2021:

The outgoing United States Ambassador to Sierra Leone – Maria Brewer, has ended her mission in Sierra Leone. She was at Presidential Lodge in Freetown yesterday, where she met the country’s president – Dr Julius Maada Bio to say goodbye.

Speaking to the president, she recalled fond memories of her time spent in Sierra Leone and expressed love for the people of Sierra Leone.

“His Excellency, this is to mark the end of my tour of 3 years. I am sorry to leave but I have to, having contributed in my own way to the country. Thank you for all that you have done and I will be in touch,” Madam Brewer said.

The President thanked the US Ambassador and said she is leaving Sierra Leone with fondest memories of her two tours of Sierra Leone; adding that she has a better story to tell having served during the war period, and now that the country is transitioning.

“You have been part of both histories of the war and of peacetime in the country. We are very pleased that we have a renewed interest in the African Union by the US government. You have made friends in and out of government because it is not often that you find a diplomat who drills deep down and be part of the grassroots,” President Bio said.

He added that Ambassador Brewer has also strengthened the government’s relationship with the US government and supported the country in many ways, including sensitising and helping during the Ebola and COVID-19 pandemics.

“You have done very well, but securing the Compact deal with Millennium Challenge Corporation, MCC, is the climax of your efforts. Today, we have been recognised because of the MCC win, and that signal is sent to the whole world about a country that is rising again,” he said, adding that it is not only about the money but also about the confidence it would build in investors.

The brief ceremony also saw the exchange of gifts between President Julius Maada Bio and Ambassador Maria Brewer.