Monitoring Report

No improvement in Sierra Leone

21.12.2017

Today (21. December 2017) Bread for all and its partner organization in Sierra Leone (Sierra Leone Network for the Right to Food SiLNoRF) launched a new monitoring report on the Mabilafu Project of Addax Bioenergy Sierra Leone Ltd (ABSL). Over a year ago, the company has restarted its operations under the new majority ownership of Sunbird Bioenergy Africa Ltd (Sunbird).

Foremost are issues of communication and participation. Sunbird, being the new tenant, has never been officially introduced to the landowners as customs and traditions dictate. The monthly meetings with the landowners are yet to be held on a constant basis. The Multistakeholder Forum (MSF) that used to be held quarterly took place only in December 2016 and November 2017. People report that the space for expressing their issues is shrinking tremendously.

Another issue of concern is that Sunbird experiments with new crops for biofuel and power production apart from sugarcane: cassava and elephant grass. Cassava is of particular concern because it is a staple food, regarded by most Sierra Leoneans as the second most important food item after rice. Sunbird has plans to grow cassava in the outgrower schemes expected to commence next year. Elephant grass grows wildly in the region and the company hires workers to cut it in their operational areas and also outside their operational areas. This sometimes creates conflicts with the owners of the land where the grass grows, as they expect to be compensated.

In this monitoring report, we examine issues of the affected people and make them public. This will help SiLNoRF to support the people to improve their situation in the project area of Addax Bioenergy.

Downlad: Monitoring report on the operations of Addax/Sunbird Bioenergy Mabilafu Project, Sierra Leone (Period July 2016 – August 2017)