History & Geography


The Republic of Sierra Leone

General

Sierra Leone is at the SW extremity of the great African bulge. It borders Guinea and Liberia and faces the Atlantic Ocean on the SW for about 220 miles. Leaving the low lying coastal plain one proceeds to rolling country to upland plateau and mountain ranges with some elevations exceeding 1,830m in the NE. Temperatures and humidity are high with heavy rainfall. There are two distinct seasons, with the dry season lasting from December to March and the wet season lasting for the rest of the year.


Currency

The official unit of currency is the Leone, consisting of 100 cents.


Government

Sierra Leone is a constitutional democracy. The country is divided into three provinces and one area. Sierra Leone is governed by a directly-elected president who serves for not more than two 5-year terms. The ministers of State are appointed by the President. The unicameral Parliament is composed of 124 members serving 5-year terms; 112 members are directly-elected, while the remaining 12 members are appointed. The legal system is based on English law and customary local law.

The capital is Freetown.


Industries

The main industries are agriculture, diamond mining, small- scale manufacturing, petroleum refining, and small-ship repair. The main exports are diamonds, rutile (a titanium mineral), cocoa, coffee, and fish. The main export-trading partners are China, Belgium, and Japan. The main imports are foodstuffs, machinery and equipment, fuels, lubricants, and chemicals. The main import-trading partners are China, India, South Africa the United States, and the United Kingdom.

 

Languages

The languages of the country are English (official, regular use limited to literate minority), Mende (principal vernacular in the S), Temne (principal vernacular in the N), and Krio (English-based Creole).


U.S. Embassy

The U.S. Embassy is situated at Southridge-Hill Station, Freetown. The mailing address is the same as street address. U. S. Embassy Sierra Leone Home Page http://freetown.usembassy.gov

 


UK Embassy

The UK Embassu is situated at the British High Commission, Spur Road, Freetown. For more information visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/world/sierra-leone




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