Liberia Traditional Council Pledges Support To Gov’t’s Pro-Poor Agenda
Monrovia – The National Council of Chiefs and Elders has pledged its commitments to support Government of Liberia’s Pro-poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD) for its successful implementation.
Report by Gerald C. Koinyeneh, [email protected]
In a resolution adopted at the end of a three-day conference in Ganta, Nimba County, the Chiefs lauded the government for the initiatives taken to improve the lives of its people and vowed to fully cooperate for the successful implementation of the policy.
“The chiefs and traditional leaders accept and are willing to work with, support and promote the government’s pro poor agenda for development and prosperity which puts the poor people at the center of governance and improve the living condition of poor people; especially in rural communities,” the chiefs pledged.
The conference was organized by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the National Council of Chiefs and Elders, the Carter Center in partnership with USAID and the Swedish Government. It was geared towards explaining the meaning of the pro-poor agenda, its impacts and the roles of every Liberian including government ministries and agencies.
The chiefs and elders in the resolution vowed to do away with some traditional practices that have been hindering the education of boys and girls.
“The Chiefs and traditional leaders will promote and uphold gender equity and equality by ensuring women’s participating in decision-making processes, striving to reduce the gender imbalances by alleviating early marriages and forceful initiation of boys and girls into traditional societies during the academic period.”
The Chiefs also support the reintroduction of the hut tax for the development of their counties and endorsed the Liberian Government’s decision to introduce a road user toll system where all vehicles plying the roads, especially major bridges will be taxed.
They agreed to undertake communal farming in their respective chiefdoms under the supervision of the Ministry of Internal Affairs with technical support from the Ministry of Agriculture.
The resolution was signed by representatives of chiefs and elders from the 15 counties of Liberia and witnessed by the Mano River Women and attested by the Chief Zanzan Karwo.
Receiving the resolution on behalf of President George M. Weah, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Varney Sirleaf thanked the traditional leaders for the decision and promised that their recommendations will be implemented.
According to the Chairman of the Organizing Committee, D. Emmanuel Wheinyue Minister Varney A. Sirleaf’s decision to hold the conference was based on his observation that the Pro-poor Agenda is totally misinterpreted in some quarters. in some quarters.
The Conference was graced by development partners and some diplomatic missions.
It was marked by presentations from several Ministries and agencies including the Ministries of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism, Finance and Development Planning, Internal Affairs and Education, Liberia Immigration Service (LIS), the Judiciary and the National Traditional Council of Chiefs and Elders.
In his presentation, the Deputy Minister for Economic Management at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Augustus Flomo asserted that the pro-poor agenda is geared towards initiating and implementing basic social programs that will benefit the poor people.
Also speaking, the Commissioner of the Liberia Immigration Services, Col. Lemuel Reeves called on the traditional leaders to cooperate with the LIS in protecting the porous borders of Liberia.
As a way of fostering cooperation between the citizens, Commissioner Reeves said the LIS has established a Community Engagement Group to work with the community to enable the LIS effectively discharge its duties.
The event brought together over 200 participants including senior traditional leaders from all 15 counties, members of the National Council of Chiefs, Paramount chiefs, Clan chiefs, General town chiefs, traditional women leaders and members of the Tribal Governors Council of Liberia and the Mano River Union Women from Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and the Ivory Coast.