The Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Dr. Joseph Mills Jones has called for a holistic approach in support of the Liberianization policy.
The policy was designed by the government to reserve certain industries in the private sector for Liberian entrepreneurs only.
Governor Jones’ statement was contained in a speech delivered on his behalf by D. Sheba Brown, Director for Administration of CBL at program marking the official launch of the Women Entrepreneur Development Organization (WEDO), held in the auditorium of the University of Liberia’s main campus.
According to him, supporting Liberian owned businesses will lead to rapid economic growth and sustainability and bring competition amongst them and their foreign counterparts.
“I am pleased to see Liberians joining hands to create their own businesses; you need not just sit and wait — we all have to contribute to the development drive of our country,’’ Governor Jones said.
The CBL Governor indicated that before the 20th century women operated businesses as a way of supplementing income for their families and to avoid politics or replacing the income from the loss of their spouses.
At that time, he said, the venture showed that women were not considered as entrepreneurs because many of them mostly involved in domestic responsibilities.
The CBL boss admonished women in every sector of the society — including the business community — to play its part so as to achieve the dream of the Liberianization policy. He further urged them not to sit and wait, but take advantage of the business opportunities already provided to help in boasting the nation’s economy.
Madam Precious Cooper–Wheigar, president of WEDO, said that economic sustainability and poverty reduction for any nation lies in the strategic empowerment of that nation’s women and girls; and if Liberia is going to reduce poverty and sustain her economic gains, “we must commit ourselves and our resources to creating an enabling environment that is sure to unleash the untapped power, energy, and creativity of Liberian women.”
She said empowering women has a multifaceted, multi-sectoral, and inter-generational impact that goes far beyond dollars and cents and extends to national health and education, while at the same time strengthening human capital, which is an indispensable ingredient for defeating poverty, inequality and vulnerability in any nation.
She said Liberian government documents reveal that women in Liberia are responsible for 93 percent of food crop production and they conduct more than 85 percent of all marketing and trading in the country.
“Women provide more than 54 percent of the national labor force in addition to performing household chores and caring for their families. These records also show that majority of us are the primary breadwinners in the family,’’ she said.