VERTIC co-organises legislative consultation workshop on BWC and UNSCR 1540 with GET Consortium in Sierra Leone

Scott Spence, Programme Director for National Implementation, co-organised a legislative consultation workshop on the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and UN Security Council Resolution 1540 (UNSCR 1540) in Sierra Leone, during 28-29 November, with the Global Emerging Pathogens Treatment (GET) Consortium. The workshop was particularly timely given the need for a comprehensive legal and regulatory framework to manage the country's laboratory network in the wake of the Ebola epidemic in 2014 and 2015.

The workshop had the objectives of: 

  • informing stakeholders about the legislative gaps identified in an analysis prepared by VERTIC of the laws and regulations of Sierra Leone to implement the BWC and related provisions of UNSCR 1540;
  • mobilising stakeholder support for the improvement of the policy and legislative framework for the implementation of the BWC and related provisions of UNSCR 1540;
  • validating the findings of the VERTIC legislation survey and facilitating the identification of further gaps in the laws and regulations governing Sierra Leone;
  • facilitating suggestions from stakeholders on the way forward;
  • codifying the suggestions in an action plan with concrete timelines for the completion of the legislative review process;
  • identifying key government Ministries, departments or agencies that will be the point of contact on behalf of the Government of Sierra Leone, and that will be part of a likely technical working group.

In addition to Scott and local and international representatives of the GET Consortium, including GET principal Dr Akin Abayomi, we were joined by Ebola survivors, the representative of an interfaith group and national security and parliamentary legal officials. VERTIC and the GET Consortium intend to continue their co-operation with the Government of Sierra Leone in 2017 with an aim towards preparing a comprehensive legal framework for biosecurity.   

For more information about the NIM Programme, please click here or contact Scott Spence.

Last changed: Dec 01 2016 at 7:37 PM