Key data for Sierra Leone

NCI24th HRCI35th HANCI35th
HANCI-Africa compares 45 African countries for their performance on 22 indicators of political commitment to reduce hunger and undernutrition. All the countries compared in the index have high rates of hunger and undernutrition. The comparative approach of the index means that country scores are calculated in relation to the political commitment of the other countries in the index.
Existing rates of: Stunting: 37.9% Wasting: 9.4% Proportion of population underweight: 9.4% Source: Government of Sierra Leone (DHS, 2013)

Strong Performance

  • The Government encourages varied agricultural research and extension services, and local farmer organisations are involved in setting policy priorities. The extension system is effective and properly reaches out to poor farmers. Government policies, strategies and mechanisms seek to ensure gender equity in access to extension services.
  • Relative to other HANCI countries, Sierra Leone’s medium/long term national development policy (The Agenda for Prosperity- the road to middle income status-PRSP III) assigns strong importance to nutrition.
  • Sierra Leone instituted a separate budget line for nutrition, enabling transparency and accountability for spending.
  • Sierra Leone has introduced a multisectoral and multistakeholder policy coordination mechanism to support delivery of the National Nutrition Policy/Strategy.
  • Policymakers in Sierra Leone benefit from regular nutrition surveys that are statistically representative at national level. The last survey was published in 2017.
  • The Government of Sierra Leone promotes complementary feeding practices and has achieved two high doses of vitamin A supplementation for 97% of children in 2015.
  • In Sierra Leone 97.1% of women aged 15-49 were visited at least once during pregnancy by skilled health personnel in 2013.
  • In Sierra Leone, constitutional protection of the right to social security is strong.

Areas for improvement

  • Spending on agriculture (4.1% of public spending in 2016), does not meet government commitments set out in the African Union’s Maputo Declaration (10% of public spending).
  • Sierra Leone’s spending in its health sector (7.9% of public spending in 2015) does not fully meet (15%) commitments set out in the Abuja Declaration.
  • In Sierra Leone, law does neither give women economic rights or agricultural land access rights equal to men. This increases women and children’s vulnerability to hunger and undernutrition.
  • Sierra Leone does not yet have a National Nutrition Policy/Strategy.
  • The Government of Sierra Leone has not enshrined the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes into domestic law.
  • Weak access to an improved source of drinking water (67.2% in 2015) and an improved sanitation facility (14.5% in 2015) prevents positive outcomes for hunger and nutrition in Sierra Leone.
  • In Sierra Leone, constitutional protection of the right to food is weak.
  • Social safety nets in Sierra Leone are basic and only cover few risks for a limited number of beneficiaries.

Hunger Reduction Commitment Index (HRCI)

Public Spending Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Public spending on agriculture as share of total public spending
?
4.1%2016Joint 28th
Public spending on health as share of total public spending
?
7.9%201517th
Policies Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Access to land (security of tenure)
?
Moderate2016Joint 34th
Access to agricultural research and extension services
?
Strong2013Joint 14th
Civil registration system — coverage of live births
?
76.7%201317th
Functioning of social protection systems
?
Weak2016Joint 21st
Laws Score Year HRCI rank of 45
Level of constitutional protection of the right to food
?
Weak2016Joint 29th
Equality of women’s access to agricultural land
?
Not in Law2014Joint 41st
Equality of women’s economic rights
?
Not in Law2014Joint 26th
Constitutional right to social security
?
Yes2006Joint 1st

Nutrition Commitment Index (NCI)

Public Spending Score Year NCI rank of 45
Separate budget for nutrition
?
Yes2017Joint 1st
Policies Score Year NCI rank of 45
Vitamin A supplementation coverage for children
?
97%2015Joint 8th
Government promotes complementary feeding
?
Yes2014Joint 1st
Population with access to an improved water source
?
67.2%201535th
Population with access to improved sanitation
?
14.5%201538th
Health care visits for pregnant women
?
97.1%20136th
Nutrition features in national development policy
?
Strong2013-201811th
National Nutrition Policy/Strategy
?
No2017Joint 40th
Multisector and multistakeholder policy coordination
?
Yes2017Joint 1st
Time bound nutrition targets
?
Yes2017Joint 1st
National nutrition survey in last 3 years
?
Yes2017Joint 1st
Laws Score Year NCI rank of 45
Enshrine ICBMS in domestic law
?
Not Enshrined in Law2016Joint 33rd