Miller requests time to pay farmers

first_imgLeguan rice farmers court caseRice farmers living on the Essequibo Island of Leguan are expected to begin garnering earnings over the next several months, after almost two years of not receiving full payments for their paddy.Arjune Raghuber had noted that he was owed some $350,000 by the rice millerAccording to reports reaching Guyana Times, the proprietor of Leguan Rice Mill Inc has promised to pay the hundreds of thousands of dollars owed to rice farmers on the island.The rice miller’s commitment comes in light of a High Court battle between him and the Leguan farmers; all parties involved have faced challenges since the collapse of the PetroCaribe Venezuela rice deal last year.According to information reaching this publication, the miller, who is the defendant, asked to be granted a six-month period to pay off the farmers.<<>> was also told that the miller intends to pay $2000 per bag of paddy. However, rice farmers on the island have noted that their prior agreement with the miller was $3000 per bag.Young rice farmer Mahendra Tularam had called for the enforcement of the Rice Producers ActThe majority of farmers have rejected the $1000 decrease, while a few others are reportedly contemplating accepting the reduced offer.This newspaper understands that failure to pay off the farmers will result in the proprietor of Leguan Rice Mill Inc being issued with a $2 million levy.The miller had contended that farmers were not paid as a result of the difficulties rice millers were also facing.On March 1, the rice miller had opined that if the Venezuela oil for rice deal had continued, the industry would have stood a better chance, as millers would have more funds in their coffers and farmers would have received their payments.At that time, however, this publication was informed that despite the many complaints, millers did have some success in finding alternative markets for the rice to be sold. The miller had, however, observed that more assistance should have come from Central Government.Meanwhile, the Leguan rice farmers have been adamant that they must be paid for their produce. They had appealed to the Rice Producers Association and the Agriculture Ministry, through its Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) sub-agency, but to no avail.In fact, Agriculture Minister Noel Holder had suggested that the non-payment issue is a matter that should be sorted out between rice farmers and their respective millers.During an earlier visit to Leguan,<<>>was told that depleted rice acreage by the then existing El-Niño weather patterns, coupled with the non-payment by millers had forced many farmers to withdraw money from their savings, while others had no choice but to sell-off significant portions of their livestock.One farmer, Arjune Raghuber, had revealed that the miller owed him $350,000, while 29-year-old MahendraTularam claimed that he was owed $730,000.Tularam had called for the enforcement of the Rice Factory Act which he opined was in place to compel millers to pay what was owed to farmers.He further explained that millers should pay half of the money to farmers within two weeks, while the rest should be paid in 42 days.last_img read more

ICHF performs 13 paediatric heart surgeries

first_imgThe International Children Heart (ICHF) Foundation, also known as “Baby Heart” on Friday completed its sixth round of paediatric heart surgeries at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPHC), with some 13 cases being attended to over the past two weeks.The team which comprises doctors from countries across the world visits the Georgetown Public Hospital for two weeks every two and a half months. On Friday, after completing some 13 surgeries, including those of congenital heart conditions, the team prepared to leave Guyana.Dr Rodrigo Soto, CEO of ICHFChief Executive Officer (CEO) of the ICHF, Dr Rodrigo Soto took the opportunity to reach out to persons who may have a congenital heart disease to seek referrals to the GPHC, so that it could be corrected.“Baby Heart has been called for in many other countries in the region, including Venezuela, Brazil and other islands in the Caribbean, in which they want us to go and develop the programme like we are doing here. However, we do believe that we need to focus and use our resources and money to help us develop a centre of excellence for our patients.”He explained that there is no way that one can prevent congenital heart disease, since at least one per cent of babies will be born with the disease that may or may not require medical treatment.“Based on Guyana’s population and based on the birth rate, we know that every year, there will be between 60 and 70 patients that will need surgery in Guyana,” Dr Soto said.Dr Soto said the team has entered into collaboration with Government and the GPHC to have health officials at the institutions trained in this area. He said they are also seeking to establish a paediatric Intensive Care Unit, so that the local team at the hospital could ably take care of babies and children found to be in critical conditions. However, the programme will not only look after babies with heart diseases but take care of all critical paediatric patients.Local Paediatric Surgeon, Dr Marissa SeepersaudLocal Paediatric Surgeon, Dr Marissa Seepersaud said the team saw a number of cases this time around. The youngest patient was a 20-day-old baby and the oldest a 34-year-old, who had congenital heart disease.“This particular mission, we were able to do for the first time in Guyana surgery on a neonate. So we had the first neonatal open heart case done in Guyana,” adding that there are certainly a lot more in the pipeline for the hospital.Dr Seepersaud said the institution has seen the need for the development of paediatric cardiac care and in Guyana. According to her, Baby Heart is not only interested in helping to treat the patients but is seeking to prepare the way for the hospital to continue long after they leave.According to Dr Seepersaud, the unit has identified an area to have the expansion of the ICU. ICHF, she reported, has offered to fund 50 per cent of the infrastructure and 100 per cent of the equipment that is needed for the expansion. It is hoped that by the end of 2017, the ICU will be up and running. She said the ICU is very much needed at this time since the section is seeing an increasing amount of paediatric patients with many complexities. According to her, this means that they will have to spend longer periods in the ICU.So far the team, which began operation over a year and a half ago, has performed 117 procedures, including 84 open heart surgeries and 33 cardiac categorisations. The team returns later this year in December.During the five previous missions which commenced in April 2015, the Baby Heart team has been performing complex surgeries and providing training for local staff geared at preparing the hospital to perform same on its own.last_img read more

Legal Clerk accuses Police Constable of assault

first_imgA Legal Clerk on Saturday reached out to this publication alleging that he was assaulted by a Police Constable attached to the Leonora Police Station, West Coast Demerara.Mike Jaundoo, 32, of 2134 Phase 2 Westminster, Parfait Harmony, West Bank Demerara related to Guyana Times a series of events that led to his claim; he has since lodged a report at the Leonora Police Station.According to Jaundoo, on July 7 he was involved in an accident where his vehicle was badly damaged by a man identified only as Sukhoo.A woman, Malika Ramsay, was also involved in the accident. Following the smash-up, Sukhoo, who was at fault, promised to have both Jaundoo’s and Ramsay’s vehicles repaired.However, this promise was never fulfilled in Jaundoo’s case. As such, the man visited Acting Police Commissioner David Ramnarine and was sent to the now Divisional Commander of Division D (West Demerara-East Bank Essequibo) Leslie James at the La Grange Police Station.Corporal Bridglall was given the task of looking into the matter when Jaundoo visited La Grange, however the Corporal was later transferred to Leonora, and the matter was being dealt with there.Jaundoo explained that Sukhoo was arrested and he was summoned to the Leonora Police Station where he was told the matter will be settled.While there, Jaundoo said that he was approached by the Constable who “threw remarks” which he did not take seriously, as the Constable is known to him for the past 16 years.Following an exchange of words, Jaundoo claims he was attacked and thrown to the ground and was dealt several kicks and cuffs about his body by the Constable. He was able to escape, seeking refuge in the Commander’s office.The matter was reported and Jaundoo was sent for medical attention.The man claims that he was attacked by the Constable because of an old grievance.He is calling for justice as nothing has been done for him since the incident which took place in front of his nine-year-old daughter and wife.This publication contacted the Leonora Police Station but all calls went unanswered.Attempts were also made to contact Commander Leslie James, but this too proved futile.last_img read more

US$101M to Battle HIV, TB, Malaria

first_imgThe National AIDS Commission (NAC) has said that the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has projected US$101,882,196 to combat these diseases for a period of three years.As a precondition to receiving this amount, the Commission said, Liberia has been requested by the Global Fund to provide only five percent (US$5M) before the money is released to the government of Liberia.This means full disbursement of the Global Fund will be contingent upon the country’s willingness to pay its contribution to the cost of the national response.Making the disclosure, the Chairman of NAC, Dr. Ivan F. Camanor, said the news of the fund is worth welcoming in that the NAC and its collaborating partner, the National AIDS Control Program (NACP)  are in need of funding to scale up the treatment of people living with HIV.He urged government to make available its portion of the fund, which serves as a ‘trump card’ to receiving the money, in order to start appropriate program for immediate and efficient HIV responses.Dr. Camanor spoke at the meeting of Board of Directors of the AIDS Commission, which was chaired by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. The Liberian leader is the Chairperson of the Board of Director of NAC.The Board meeting was held in the C. Cecil Dennis Auditorium of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday, May 6.In a power point presentation, Dr. Camanor said out of the US$101M, US$45,238,243 is projected for HIV&AIDS response; 9,590,724 for Tuberculosis and US$ 47,053,229 for malaria, amounting to US$101,882,196. These funds will be used from 2014 to 2016 December.The NAC boss said that his institution and the NACP are anticipating a combined achievement of 80 percent coverage and the expanded eligibility guidelines and increasing Anti Retroviral Therapy (ART) to nearly 19,000 by 2020.Dr. Camanor told the gathering comprising an array of partners and representatives of the UN system that he hopes the number of children receiving ART would increase from 900 to nearly 1600 in the investment framework scenario when fund is provided.He said the country hopes the number of new HIV infections would decrease and new infections would reduce by 26 percent by 2020 from 1,700 in 2013 to just 734 in 2020.The Commission reported a steady increase of HIV victims in recent years. A considerable increment among men as a result of men having sex with men (gay activities), was also reported.“Without the rapid scale-up of intervention there would still be about 1,336 new infections in 2020; note that in the base scenario adult incidence would be somewhat lower in 2020, 0.02 percent compared to 0.06 percent in 2013 but because the population is growing the number of new infections would not drop as significantly as the incidence,” the National AIDS Commission indicated.Dr. Camanor also noted that the Commission hopes the number of AIDS deaths will drop even more sharply due to the effects of scaling up ART, deaths would be 1/3 lower in 2020 with rapid scale-up, but this cannot be done in the absence of funding.For her part, President Sirleaf said she will continue to advocate that HIV/AIDS, Gender Equality, Sexual and Gender-based violence are given the priority attention they deserve at the global level in her capacity as a co-chair of the United Nations High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda.She indicated that the results of her advocacy will depend greatly on how the national anti-AIDS authorities will engage the global community in achieving the agenda.President Sirleaf wants data collected from the outgoing strategic framework to form part of the development of the new HIV Strategic Plan based on the investment approach of the new funding model of the Global Fund.“In order to have an impactful participation in the new global plan, it is incumbent upon national government to mobilize domestic funding to respond to HIV which will enable the Government to consolidate past achievements and at the same time strengthen its collective determination in recording zero new HIV infections, zero new deaths and zero discrimination of people living with HIV/AIDS,” she said.She encouraged members of the NAC to remain positively engaged with the international community in forming part of the new action plan that is expected to commence in 2015 and run up to 2020 as the current action plan closes later this year (2014).The Co-chair of the House of Representative committee on health, Representative Johnson Toe Chea in an exclusive interview with reporters, pledged his support to ensure that government makes available the US$5M as soon as possible.He said though the current budget preparation is at an advanced stage, he will lobby to ensure rapid progress so that Liberia would not forfeit the Global Fund.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

‘No Camping’ Upsets U-20’s Coach Pella

first_imgJunior Lone Star’s head coach, Robert Lartey (Coach Pella) has expressed frustration on the failure of the LFA to camp the team, before departing the country on Thursday to honor their 2nd leg clash against the Young Elephants in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.Coach Pella said after the 1-0 victory last Sunday, May 11, 2014, the team has not gone to camp and would not be camping before their flight.Speaking yesterday to the Daily Observer via mobile phone, the coach said camping is a tactic to polish and psychologically prepared for a win.He said also that the major achievement in camping is to knit a team’s spirit.“We use camping to talk to the players during their leisure time at night and early morning hours, to build closeness among the players,” he said, “camping is another method to circumvent players from conflict and embarrassment.”Coach Pella also expressed fear over the morale of his players and appealed to officials of the LFA to visit the players while in practice to rekindle the morale of the players.“Players’ motivation has dramatic effect on the success of the team,” Coach Pella said, “they learn much faster, and keeps winning because nothing is worse than losing control of your team.” He said a 27-man delegation, comprising of 20 players and seven officials would be in Abidjan to pass their second barrier against Ivory Coast after successfully crossing-over The Gambia through a protest.A technical staff, who begged anonymity, also told the Daily Observer via mobile phone, said the letdown of the camping and the refusal of the LFA to increase the players’ per diem from L$200 to L$500 per practice session are sickening.Coach Pella meanwhile urged the LFA to make haste to help the technical staff rebuild the confidence of the team to be able to pull a win on Sunday in Abidjan.The coach said the failure of the LFA to quickly adapt a motivational method on the youthful Lone Star might lead to a worst result.When contacted Secretary General B. Alphonso Armah said, “I don’t think the team will go to camp before their departure on Thursday because we are busy working on the departure of the senior national team.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Legal Expert Pleads for Professionalism in Law Practice

first_imgOne of Liberia’s legal experts, Cllr. George E. Henries, is calling on lawyers to demonstrate professionalism and ethical behavior as they go about their practice.There is public fear about lawyers amidst the   poor justice system in Liberia, which is riddled with accusations that they (lawyers) receive money and bribe judges to turn justice against the righteous and justify the evildoers, he lamented.Cautioning lawyers working with the Henries Law Firm against unprofessional and unethical practices, Cllr. Henries said they (lawyers) need not to run after their clients for gratuity or make contacts for cases.“By conducting yourself professionally and building trust in your clients, the clients will in turn seek after you instead of [you] lawyers running   after clients. Therefore, you lawyers should defend your reputation by conducting yourself professionally and ethically,” Cllr. Henries stressed. He recalled that in the past, lawyers were asked not to advertise their law firms but to be   contacted on the basis of professionalism.  But   such is not the case today, where lawyers are all over the place running after clients.Expressing his appreciation to the lawyers working with his firm for their valuable services, Cllr. Henries, a former Supreme Court Associate Justice, who is now retired from practicing in court, said though the lawyers have over the years worked hard to bring a good reputation to the firm, more has to be done, especially when it comes to relationship with clients.The Henries proprietor, among other things, urged lawyers working with the firm to be acquainted with pending cases and converge every morning to discuss and argue same  before proceeding to the court to meet their opponents.“Professionalism among you will only be as good as the firm you are with; and by building a good reputation, you can become a judge or justice in the judicial system,” Cllr. Henries admonished the firm’s lawyers.He further urged them to adequately represent their clients and build confidence in them, noting that by that clients will always seek such lawyers’ expertise.Speaking exclusively to the Daily Observer after the program, Cllr. Henries intoned that public fear for lawyers is predicated upon the  unethical behavior some lawyers carry out.He stressed, however, that any lawyers following ethical standard and behaving professionally will earn the requisite respect from the public.The Henries Law Firm began active service in 1944 and was established by Richard A. Henries who, for nearly three decades served as Speaker of the House of Representatives.  He became Speaker in 1951 after the then Speaker, Benjamin Greene Freeman, was selected as President W.V.S. Tubman’s running mate during the True Whig Party national convention that year.  Unfortunately, the day had not ended before Mr. Freeman suddenly died, an event that shook Monrovia like a thunderbolt.It was following this that Tubman chose William R. Tolbert, Jr., as his Vice President.  Counselor Richard A. Henries served as Speaker until the 1980 coup d’état.The Henries Law Firm has produced many justices and judges in the Liberian justice system.Its current proprietor, Cllr. George E. Henries, a renowned international and corporate lawyer, a 1962 graduate of Cornell University Law School in the United States, one of America’s top ten universities.Upon his return home, he first served as Assistant Attorney General of Liberia, Solicitor General and then Attorney General.  He spent nine years serving in the Liberian Justice System.He also taught Law for 25 years in Liberia and worked at the Liberia Corporate Registry in New York.  He now serves as a consultant and legal opinion provider for Africa, Europe and United States, amongst others.The year-end party showing appreciation to workers is one motivating factors that encourage people in the workplace.The Henries Law Firm lauded its workers and certificated over five persons for their dedicated services; while commending all workers for their time and effort exerted to keep the firm moving for the past 70 years.  The Henries Law Firm is Liberia’s oldest and probably longest surviving law firm.Speaking earlier, Cllr. Cooper Kruah, one of the firm’s executives, said the lawyers are rendering services they are not paid for but only given allowances that are not even sustainable.The year-end party, designed to recognize their services and certificate some of them, was not a mistake but a motivation to also enable them to realize their potentials and services to the firm.Meanwhile, one of the certificated lawyers, Kuku Dorbor, speaking on behalf of the honorees, commended the management of the law firm and confessed that they are treated even better than most of the firms in Monrovia and other parts of Liberia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

In Ebola Fight, PROCMURA-Liberia Reaches ‘Vulnerable’ Communities, Including Banjor in Virginia

first_imgMembers of PROCMURA-Liberia Chapter’a Anti-Ebola Taskforce Committee over the weekend reached out to the leadership of several of the‘vulnerable and most Ebola affected communities’ in Monrovia and its suburbs with items to help the residents in the fight against the spread of the Ebola virus disease (EVD). PROCMURA is an acronym for Pan-African Christian Organization dedicated to Christian constructive engagement with Muslims in witness, mutual tolerance and collaboration towards peace and peaceful co-existence for the holistic development of the human family. Founded in 1959, PROCMURA stretches a hand of friendship to the Muslim Community,  with a vision of a continent where religious communities can live with their differences in peace. It is well established in 20 African countries and visible in 10 more. It has well trained grassroots workers (men and women) on the complexity of Christian-Muslim relations.The items distributed included  Household disinfectants, several bags of the 25kg rice, and buckets with faucets, powder soaps, vegetable oil, etc.   The items were distributed among residents of Pianyonkosa Community in Banjor former refugee camp,  one of the hardest hit by Ebola. The Pianyonkosa Community is located near the Banjor Central High School in Virginia, outside Monrovia. It is one of the places that the EVD took the lives of at least 45 persons in recent weeks.Other areas that benefited included Hotel Africa Blessed Community and Banjor Beach, near the residence of the late  former Justice Minister, Jenkins Scott. An executive of PROCMURA-Liberia, Dr. Benjamin D. Lartey, who led the distribution committee, believes that the fight against the EVD in the sub-region would succeed only when those in the fight come together to kick the EVD out from the affected countries. With that message, Dr. Lartey called on the leaderships of afflicted communities that benefited from PROCMURA’s donations to take the lead in the fight by spreading the necessary awareness to complement the government’s  efforts. “This is not the time to score victory against anyone, but to collaborate by forging together in our fight to score victory against the deadly Ebola from the human race,” Dr. Lartey asserted.PROCMURA-Liberia Area Committee’s overall anti-Ebola message called for all to join in  kicking the disease out of the country and protect ourselves and others to stay alive.Dr. Lartey called for all communities to join and take ownership for the protection of the populace against Ebola which, he insisted, “has no place in the country or sub-region.” Their message also urged Liberians to stop religious and cultural practices that can expose people to Ebola attack. Heads of community members that received the donated items individually and on behalf of the residents expressed gratitude to PROCMURA for the gesture. They promised to distribute items they received first among Ebola survivors and other ‘vulnerable’ community residents.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

‘No Room for Joy, Complacency in Ebola Virus Fight’

first_imgThe secretary general of the Liberia Immunization Platform (LIP) has cautioned Liberians and partners that there is no room for premature joy and complacency in the ongoing Ebola fight nationwide.Mr. James B. Ballah, LIP’s chief scribe, gave the warning Tuesday on the Old Road in Monrovia during a one day stakeholders seminar held at the civil society group’s headquarters.The meeting attended by Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOHSW) and policy formulation partners was geared towards the implementation of the MOHSW and the LIP’s ‘Community Mapping Project.’According to the seminar organizers, 30 participants were drawn from several Monrovia-based organizations.S.G. Ballah called on Liberians to work as a collective force in order to kick Ebola out of Liberia.It is not for Liberians and partners to sit idle, but rather to intensify efforts aimed at beating back the deadly Ebola virus from the country.Secretary General Ballah intimated that Liberians and their foreign partners should be aware that the Ebola virus could re-emerge and kill many more Liberians.Mr. Ballah also underscored the need to triple the efforts aimed at enhancing and intensifying the preventive health measures prescribed by medical authorities.Secretary General Ballah further recalled that in 2013, Liberians were given the opportunity to get together and form a collective work force as a civil society group for sustained advocacy in the country.He explained that the intention was to join the Liberian Government in the provision of sustained immunization initiative for all children and women in the country.The LIP secretary general called on all Liberians, especially mothers, children and partners, to support Liberia’s immunization programs.He disclosed that there are 18 countries involved in the global immunization initiative.“Ghana has become a success story in the West Africa region owing to the sustained immunization of their citizens, especially children and mothers that have met the age requirements,” Mr. Ballah asserted.He regretted that as a result of the current Ebola epidemic, LIP’s immunization program for the nation was disrupted. He said Liberians should now begin to galvanize efforts for the immunization of children.In remarks, the interim chairman of the board of directors, George Stewart, urged the participants and partners to consider the discussions and exchanges at the seminar as critical to implementing a successful immunization program in Liberia.In a brief statement, the program manager for the Global Alliance Vaccine Initiative (GAVI) at the Catholic Relief Service (CRS) Liberia, Ms. Suene Flomo, stressed the need for the participants and partners to continue exchanging views and comments on a professional basis and thanked support partners and staff of LIP for the splendid collaborative interactions over the years.In a statement on behalf of MOHSW’s Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI), program manager Adolphus Clarke admonished the LIP staff, community chairpersons and participants to work as a united front for sustained immunization projects in the country.Mr. Clarke underscored the need for the organizers and participants in the various communities to consider the immunization programs as top priorities for all Liberians.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

LBA Agrees: Congress before Elections

first_imgNow the right thing must be done to cool all hearts. And Liberia Basketball Association President Rufus Anderson has agreed to do just that.Hence, the January 28 date set for the elections for the leadership of the association has been scrapped.Information reaching the Daily Observer yesterday with stakeholders and the administration, with the Liberia National Olympic officials ended with Anderson administration agreeing to do things right.“Mr. Brown recommended to the administration to scrap the January 28 elections,” said an insider who was at the meeting, “and take necessary measures to promote goodwill.”President Anderson accepted the recommendation to carry out the necessary things, he said. “There will be a new date, after Congress.”“At the Congress the administration is expected to outline its activities for the last four years,” he added.The Anderson administration will also provide a financial report, explaining what funds were received from either the private or government; how much was spent and what contracts were signed.The next step, he said, “will be the setting up of an Independent Elections Commission.”The Commission, without the administration’s influence, “will then produce guidelines about eligibility for interested candidates for the various positions.”The LNOC is the mother body to all federations and associations and it has major influence upon them.“The LNOC sponsors periodic clinics to develop athletes and coaches as well as officials,” admitted another observer who was at the meeting, “and hence its officials are very straightforward when it comes to proper administration.”Until the cancellation of the elections yesterday, the Liberia Basketball Association had released detailed guidelines, including fees for positions from president (U$500); vice presidents for administration and operations, (U$400 each); treasurer, (U$300); Financial Secretary, (U$300) and chaplain (U$200).“It was not released by an elections commission,” the Daily Observer was told yesterday, “and as a result it was clear that some club members would be unhappy.”Though the guidelines emanated from the LBA, they quoted in several places election rules by the Federation of the International Basketball Association, (FIBA).It was learned that 14 third division basketball teams, including Destiny Kings, Star 1, Island Clippers, Bong Shooters, Island Calves, Buchanan Braves, Harbel Tappers and Mamba Point Legends did not take part in last season’s league.“Surprisingly,” another insider hinted, “they were qualified to vote despite being irregulars.”The cancellation of the January 28th election may be a major blow to incumbent Rufus Anderson whose administration has already seen a crack in its unity, with its financial secretary claiming financial impropriator.“It means that eligibility status will be announced by the future Elections Commission and not the LBA as it was done,” our source said. Now with a new eligibility status, it means the surprise that the administration had expected can no longer hold.And this provides other candidates who were apparently told were ineligible another opportunity to join the race.“As far as I’m concerned,” said one club president, “we are aware of those who are capable to lead the LBA and therefore it does not make sense to introduce rules to deny potential candidates a chance to give their support to basketball.”This is so because, like football, basketball owners are simply investing their resources in players without returns for their investment. “We must welcome those who are desirous to see a better basketball,” he said.Another added, “We love the game and want to make sure that it survives and develops to take its proper place in Liberia.”That sounds interesting, but with Anderson not ready to go down so easily, the new rules or eligibility and internal discontent may prove his undoing in the end.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

‘Public Reform Continuous Process’

first_imgThe outgoing World Bank Public Sector Specialist, Mr. Raymond Muhula, has said that public reform is a continuous process of a country and as such, everyone needs to contribute in building a vibrant economy.He said few countries in Africa and Europe have put forward such ambitious and comprehensive plans for public reform.According to him, the reforms must be an ongoing project, not a one-off exercise, and suggests giving citizens a bigger voice in the process–by strengthening the public financial system and building the capacity of civil servants.Mr. Muhula made these statements recently when an honor was bestowed upon him by the Ministry of Finance Development and Planning (MFDP) through its Economic Governance and Institution Reform Project (EGIRP) in Monrovia. The EGIRP project is under the Ministry of Finance and sponsored by the World Bank to help government improve efficiency and transparency in managing public financial management and human resources, focusing on revenue administration, public procurement, budget execution and payroll management.The project, which started in May 2008 will also support governance and institutional reforms by strengthening public financial management processes and system, building the capacity of civil servants with focus on public procurement as a pilot, and initiating civil service reform and was expected to close on August 31, 2011 but has been extended to June 30, 2015 due to Ebola.Speaking during his farewell program at the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Muhula noted that the Financial Management System of Liberia can now be compared to any other international Financial Management System.He said though the project is coming to an end there is still a need to further improve on the system in order to maintain its status, adding that there are more to be done if Liberia must have a successful system.Mr. Muhula extended his gratitude to the Economic Governance and Institutional Reform Project team for its level of coordination while working together as a team. “I am not so excited because I will miss working with you all. For the past four years I worked in Liberia, I have already established a family with my team,” he said.Mr. Muhula will be replaced by Mr. Smile Dem Kwawukume who will work with the team until the end of the project on June 30, 2015 due to his new assignment in Austria, Vienna.Also speaking, the Director of the Financial Management Training Project, Mr. Aagon F. Tingba said before the start of the project, Liberia was painfully recruiting international financial managers but now with the help of the Financial Management Training in the country, there are more qualified people in the system.  He explained that Mr. Muhula played a major role in strengthening the Financial Management System of Liberia, adding that over the past four years, there has been a huge improvement in the system something, he said can be attributed to his involvement.Mr. Boniface Satu, Project Coordinator of EGIRP, gave an update on its activities and results at a special joint board meeting with the Project Technical Committee and National Steering Committee. He said the original Project Development Objectives (PDO) was designed to improve efficiency and transparency in managing public financial management and human resources, etc.Mr. Satu said the project is also intended to improve economic governance and strengthen public administration which has been a key priority for the GOL.This priority, he said, was clearly reflected in the government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (Lifting Liberia for 2008-2011) under the first PRS pillar: Governance and the rule of law.The importance attached to this pillar reflects the extent that poor governance, characterized by widespread corruption and abuse of public resources, has eroded public confidence in government, a legacy of the 14 year civil war that destroyed productive assets, physical infrastructure, institutional and human capacity which has untimely led to the collapse of the economy and worsen the living standard of Liberians, he said.The Project Coordinator of EGIRP also disclosed that due to scale-up activities the government requested additional financing of US$7 million to finance activities to cover the cost overrun, and establish project management as a separate component.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more