County Service Staff undergo training for effective delivery

May 26, 2016

County Service Centers have been set up and in full operations in four Counties

The Ministry of Internal Affairs has conducted a one-week decentralization training for over 108 civil servants as County Service Center staff in Monrovia.

The civil servants were drawn from various government Ministries, Agencies and Commissions in Grand Cape Mount, Bomi, Rivercess and Gbarpolu Counties.

The training was intended to build the capacity of the county service center staff to enable them become effective in the actualization process of the government’s de-concentration initiative. The participants were trained to serve various service centers in the earmarked counties.

Topics highlighted during the course of the training include the concept of political, administrative and fiscal decentralization by which citizens or local elected officials will have power in public decision making; the transferring of planning, financing and management of certain functions from central government to local authorities was also featured.

For example, financial and monitoring responsibilities to be given local government structures to help in developing the country.

Gender mainstreaming was also highlighted in the training to promote women’s full participation at all levels of the decentralization programme.

Speaking during the opening of the training, Acting Deputy Minister for Administration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Momolu Johnson said decentralization is essential to post conflict reconstruction and the governance process of Liberia since the Country.

“The government has been operating on a centralized basis over the past long years, with; the focus only on Monrovia. This government wants to make a change in this situation to create opportunity for people in the counties” Mr. Johnson said.

He pointed out that with the changes being made by the government, it was necessary that relevant staff be trained to effect such changes.

“The training is about educating civil servants to understand the importance of decentralization and  giving power to local authorities to make their own decisions in offering government’ services. 

Mr. Johnson urged the participants to take the knowledge back to their respective counties to enhance service delivery.

Speaking earlier, the National Program Director for the Decentralization Program, Dr. Roosevelt Jayjay said that despite challenges facing the decentralization concept, the Ministry of Internal Affairs remains committed in ensuring that the challenges are resolved in order to achieve the goals of the Liberia Decentralization Support Program.

For his part, Cllr. Yarsuo Weh-Dorliae, a Commissioner at the Governance Commission said the de-concentration initiative is a historical event since independence in 1847. 

According to him, the concept is to change course where the main sources of multiple services and other major opportunities are always concentrated in Monrovia.

“People will not travel from far distances on bad roads again to Monrovia to get birth certificates, work permits, marriage certificates and other important documents, as everything will now be at the county level.” Says Cllr. Weh-Dorliae.

At the same time, an official of the European Union, Manuel Iglesias commended the Ministry of Internal Affairs for the training exercise.

Mr. Iglesias wants the government to ensure sustainability of the County Service Centers that are being established across the country.

The Implementation of the Liberia Decentralization Support Program (LDSP) is funded by the European Union, Swedish Government, USAID, UNMIL and UNDP. 

Contact

For further information, contact:

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: zotasam@gmail.com Tel: +231-886-474-563/770175162

D. Emmanuel Wheinyue- Media Engagement Officer National Decentralization Implementation Secretariat, Ministry of Internal Affairs Tel; +231/770178755/886222510; e-mail-dwheinyue@yahoo.com

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