The World Meteorological Organisation, WMO, has solicited the technical support of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NiMet, in developing the Sierra Leone National Meteorological Service.
Making the appeal during a technical exchange visit to NiMet by delegates from the Sierra Leone Mission on Weather and Climate Services, accompanied by a representative from the African Development Bank, AfDB, Mr. Bernard Gomez, the World Meteorological Organisation representative for North, Central and West Africa, acknowledged NiMet’s big brotherly role in the development of meteorology, not just in the West African region but in Africa as a whole, and urged the agency not to relent.

Speaking further on the purpose of the visit, Mr. Gomez revealed that ‘’we are here to discuss with NiMet and see what can be done to help this country (Sierra Leone) in our region. I know that NiMet is assisting them with daily weather forecast but we can do more. Those of us who fly in the sub-region, you know what it means when a met service is not functioning well, and not providing the required observations and products for aviation. So I think it is our duty to see what we can do to strengthen a sister country in the sub region. This mission intends to tour your aviation-tailored facilities in order to replicate same in Sierra Leone’’.

NiMet had earlier deployed its technical staff to Sierra Leone to assess their meteorological needs and proffer possible solutions. The recommendations of the NiMet expert team, with the financial support of the AfDB, gave rise to this assembly, which would transit into a tour of NiMet meteorological facilities with a special bias in aviation.

Reiterating the particular areas of interest, Mr. Usman Banya, the Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation and Aviation of Sierra Leone, posited that, ‘’we need technical assistant and capacity development, mostly in the areas of aviation. For this to happen, we intend to downscale what we have seen here to the sectors in our country. I believe this is possible due to our bilateral relationship’’.

While reacting to all the submissions made, The Director-General/CEO of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NiMet, who was represented by the Director, Department of Applied Meteorological Services, Engineer Mailadi Abba, thanked the AfDB and WMO for their commitment, which made the mission possible and stressed that the Federal Government of Nigeria and indeed NiMet, would continue to play its big brotherly role, not just in the West African sub-region but also in Africa as a whole.

The DG NiMet further added that the support given to other countries by the Agency would not just build the profile of NiMet but would also give the Agency international visibility.

Source: NiMet