The constitution and other laws and policies protect religious freedom.
Chapter III, Section 24, of the 1991 constitution guarantees all citizens the freedom to observe their own religious practices or to change religions without interference from the government or members of other religious groups. In addition, instruction in a specific religion is permissible only in schools organized by the religious community or denomination.
The Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender, and Children’s Affairs is the government body responsible for religious matters but has no mandate to recognize, register, or otherwise regulate religious groups. Religious groups that seek public recognition by the ministry are required to complete a form. In practice, most churches and mosques registered with the government as well as with an independent religious organization, such as the Council of Churches of Sierra Leone, the Evangelical Fellowship of Sierra Leone (which represents many evangelical churches and denominations), or the United Council of Imams (which has registered 2,350 mosques).
The government permits religious instruction in all schools. The government requires a standard Religion and Morals Education (RME) curriculum in all public schools through high school, which is to cover Christianity, Islam, and other religions. Private schools are not required to use RME, although many Christian schools do; Muslim schools generally do not use RME, which they believe provides insufficient coverage of Islam.
The government observes the following religious holidays as national holidays: the Birth of the Prophet Muhammad, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Eid al-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, and Christmas.