The United Nations Development Programme flagship publication- Human Development Report (HDR) 2019 underscores that systemic inequalities are still visible, despite unprecedented progress against poverty, hunger and disease.
It acknowledges that many forms of inequality are deeply affecting social cohesion, economic growth, and public trust and confidence in the social contracts that citizens have with their Governments, institutions, and among themselves.
UNDP Liberia joined the Global Launch of the HDR report performed by His Excellency Iván Duque Márquez, the President of Colombia, and Mr. Achim Steiner, the UNDP Administrator, in Bogota, Colombia 09 December 2019.
Officially launching the report in Monrovia, Vice President Dr. Jewel Howard Taylor said the government’s development roadmap, “Pro Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development” seeks to provide access, increase equality and ensure inclusion for all under a development framework.
Vice President Taylor described the 2019 HDR as one that provides an authoritative and unbiased analysis of ranking in certain key sectors, which reflects the quality of human development, gender gaps, women empowerment, environmental and social economic sustainability.
She emphasized that based on findings from the report, government, policymakers, and international development partners, need to jointly craft new policies, put in place new plans, and prescription which will help Government tackle the issues as everyone looks towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030.
“Nations cannot achieve the SDGs goals of leaving no one behind, if the gender gap continues to widen in terms of empowerment, inclusion, and better access to opportunity for women," says the Vice President.
Madam Taylor highlighted non-achievement of the SDG if climate change and environmental sustainability are not confronted.
“We will never achieve the SDGs if land tenure and land rights do not address issues of alternative livelihood in the concession areas and if government fails to provide proper education by employment, skills, innovation and jobs for the youthful population of which Liberia has about 60%”, VP Taylor warned.
UNDP Resident Representative in Liberia Pa Lamin Beyai at the gathering of officials of Government and stakeholders during the launch event in Monrovia, committed UNDP to continue working with the Government of Liberia, Development Partners, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), and other stakeholders to support inclusive and equitable development.
"In doing so, we will focus on vulnerable groups, seeking to foster gender equality; and ensuring that no one is left behind in the implementation of UNDP’s Country Programme Document (CPD) (2020-2024), and the roll out of the new UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF),” says Dr. Beyai.
He mentioned that there will be a collective approach to contributing to the promotion of inclusive and accountable governance by strengthening the rule of law, building stronger institutions, fostering social cohesion, and accelerating green and inclusive growth.
The Report states that in addition to differences in earnings, inequality is also about unequal distribution of wealth and power, and the entrenched social and political norms.
“It is my hope that the findings, and recommendations of the report will inform and guide policy in our collective resolve to support Liberia’s development.”-UNDP Liberia Resident Representative.
Human Development Report 2019: Beyond income, beyond averages, beyond today: Inequalities in human development in the 21st Century” goes beyond the dominant discourse on income disparities to also consider inequalities in other dimensions such as health, education, access to technologies, and exposure to economic and climate-related shocks.
It is the first of the new generation of such reports, pushing the boundaries to accelerate thought-leadership, drive conversations on the future of development, and in the process, advance progress towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).