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Liberia: CSO Holds Forum on Governance & Financing

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MONROVIA – A WASH civil society organization, United Youth, has ended a one-day forum on Governance and Financing for water, sanitation and hygiene sector.

The one-day forum brought together local NGOs and civil society groups and residents from several communities.

Providing an overview of the forum, the Executive Director of the United Youth disclosed that the intent of the forum is to review the status of governance and financing in the sector.

Timothy Kpeh indicated that the forum will provide the platform for ordinary Liberians to understand what is unfolding in the water, sanitation and hygiene sector of the country.

Mr. Kpeh also said the forum is geared toward ensuring that issues relating to governance are properly addressed by the sector actors and the Government of Liberia.

Serving as one of the panelists at the one-day forum, Public Works Assistant Minister for Community Services, Bolton Dennis, described his ministry’s role for the past years as a one intended to coordinate the sector.

Assistant Minister Dennis asserted that the establishment of the National WASH Commission has restricted the Department of Community Services in the sector.

He said funding is still a major problem in the sector, especially the allocation of funding for rural water projects.

Dennis said the provision of safe water to rural dwellers has been supported by donors over the years.

He admonished participants to also pressure government to ensure funding is provided for rural water projects.

The Assistant Public Works Minister said in the absent of funding, rural dwellers will continue to experience challenges when it comes to provision of safe drinking water.

For their part, some participants expressed dissatisfaction about the form and manner in which the issues of water, sanitation and hygiene is been addressed.

They called on government to exhibit the political way in addressing WASH issues in the country.

The participants indicated that, if government fails to muster that political way, all gains made will be lost.

They urged the organizers to engage stakeholders and government in addressing the issues surrounding governance and financing. 

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