GoL Decentralization Programme gets US$5million from Sweden

Dec 10, 2015

Ambassador Nordström and Acting Minister Sirleaf Signing the Agreement at the Ministry of Internal Affairs

The Ambassador of the Kingdom of Sweden to Liberia, Madam Lena Nordström, says communities’ participation in society is fundamental in order to maintain peace and increase inclusiveness.

She said people’s participation will empower the communities to take leadership of local development and contribute to national development with their full human potential, adding, that this will also contribute to a more effective way to combat poverty.

The Swedish Ambassador was speaking in Monrovia, when her government through the Swedish Embassy, signed a 5 million United States Dollars contribution agreement with the Liberian Government in support to the implementation of the National Policy on Decentralization and Local Governance.

According to Madam Nordström, Liberia has demonstrated leadership and commitment, and that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has given high priority to decentralization, evidenced by the Round Table on Decentralization in December last year, the launch of the National De-concentration Platform early this year and the draft Local Government Bill as important milestones to develop inclusive governance. “ 

“The launch of the Grand Bassa County Service Center in Buchanan, which I visited in October and was very impressed by, is another tangible step”. The Swedish Envoy stressed.

Speaking earlier, Acting Internal Affairs Minister Varney A. Sirleaf who signed on behalf of the Liberian Government thanked the Swedish Government for the support, noting that the contribution would help fast track decentralization implementation.

Minister Sirleaf assured full accountability of the funds, saying, as Chairperson of the Board of the Decentralization Program, he would ensure full compliance with the necessary accounting procedures.

He said the Swedish contribution to the program signifies that partners are aware of significant steps being taken by the government to promote inclusive governance and people’s participation.

Mr. Sirleaf emphasized that Government is committed to ensuring implementation of Decentralization and local governance programs, because according him; decentralization puts a country on the path of prosperity.

Speaking for the UN System in Liberia, UNMIL’s Deputy Special Representative to the UN Secretary General and UNDP Resident Representative Antonio Vigilante described Decentralization as one of the reforms intended to create a new Liberia. Mr. Vigilante said the signing was a good start, but stressed that it was up to the National Legislature to do its part.

Others attending the ceremony included, representatives from the EU, USAID, UNDP, Governance Commission and UN-Women among others.

The LDSP supports the implementation of the decentralized policy of Liberia to promote participatory local governance and an improved system of service delivery that is more localized and responsive to the needs and aspirations of all citizens.

As a successor to the Liberia Decentralization and Local Development (LDLD) project, the LDS Program also seeks to support the decentralization of political, administrative and fiscal governance in Liberia, by ensuring responsive and capable and accountable local governments, developing and strengthening local level planning, monitoring and management capacity. The release concluded.



For further information, contact:

Virginia Chitanda -Chief Technical Advisor Decentralization Programme; email-Virginia.chitanda @undp.org/ Tel: +231-775237796

Emmanuel Wheinyue-Ministry of Internal Affairs; e-mail dwheinyue@yahoo.com   Tel: +231-0770178755

Augusta Pshorr –Communications Analyst/ E-mail: augusta.pshorr@undp.org/Tel: +231-770-003-819/886-521-425

Sam Zota –National UNV Communications Associate Email: sam.zota@undp.org/Alt-zotasam@gmail.com/ Tel: +231-886-474-563/770175162

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