Sia Nyama Koroma, former First Lady of Sierra Leone, has shared her experience with Fatima Bio, the new First Lady. Over a quiet chat, Koroma urged Bio to be tolerant, develop a heart for the people and to be caring.

Explaining about her life as a First Lady, Koroma said, “I am happy to have served as first lady. This has helped me maximise my full potential.

I worked a lot on women’s empowerment, reproductive health, gender, politics, sexual and reproductive health. I worked in rebranding hospitals, worked in several schools where I gave lots of scholarships to pupils.”

Sia Koroma said, “Setting up a dialysis unit was the most expensive and work that I am passionate about. It was a trying moment but I was able to succeed and I am leaving with a functioning dialysis unit.” She said, “For me, it was all about serving my people and I am grateful to God for giving me the opportunity. I want to be a foundation layer and I hope that the new first lady will build on these legacies.”

Leaving the presidency for a normal life, Koroma said she will miss “the women, market women, men and paramount chiefs. My work in the rural communities will be missed”.

But she hope to see the women of Sierra Leone after ten years, “to be more experience; they should know their rights and they should be seen as trail blazers that will be fighting for the less fortunate.”

The new First Lady, Fatima Bio, said, “I am very thrilled and happy for the confidence bestowed on my husband, which has led me to this height.”

She said, “I have been a gender person and I believe if women are empowered things will change I have always believed in women. When you believe in the women, they will definitely cater for the children so I am focusing on this.”

During the campaign, Fatima was seen campaigning with her husband. “I have a philosophy. I don’t like people writing my story. Lots of people say we can’t do this and we can’t achieve this. And I want to prove to them that it was wrong. You don’t ever say you can’t. I want to rewrite the story and I want women to believe that my campaign was not only a fight for Sierra Leone but a fight for the country.”