Liberia: NaFAA Provides Resettlement Fund to Affected Parties

Group of occupants awaiting their resettlement fund from the World Bank Fisheries Project  

Authorities of the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA) have compensated several occupants for resettlement along the 0.6km access road corridor of the Mesurado Fishing Pier, a press release from NaFAA has disclosed.

The release said the Government of Liberia through NaFAA has received 40 million in loan and grant from the World Bank and intends to apply portion of the money for the construction of the 0.6-kilometer access road to Mesurado Pier, Coast Guard Base, where the country’s first industrial fishing port is expected to be constructed.

Consistent with Environmental and Social Standard-5 of the World Bank Environmental and Social Framework (ESF), the release stated that (NaFAA) has implemented the Abbreviated Resettlement Action Plan (ARAP) through the payment of compensations to project-affected parties.

According to the release, a total of 90 project-affected parties from 42 households recently received their compensation for resettlement through the “Liberia Sustainable Management of Fisheries Project as part of the implementation of the Abbreviated Resettlement Action Plan (ARAP).

Some of the beneficiaries of the Archepako Community, near the Coast Guard Base, extolled NaFAA and the World Bank for their resettlement benefits, while assuring that they will depart the area in order for development to take its course.  

The Community Chairman Sieh Torbor, and other beneficiaries including Abraham Soul, Jartu Johnson, Jartu Vannie, and others said they were impressed with the processes that NaFAA through the Liberia Sustainable Management of Fisheries Project (LSMFP) initiated which gave birth to all of them receiving their compensation from the World Bank funding.

The more than 80 occupants who termed the processes as free and fair promised to leave the community before the stipulated date set by NaFAA through the Liberia Sustainable Management of Fisheries Project (LSMFP). 

The Industrial fishing port, when constructed will be a major boost to the Liberian fisheries sector as it would enable the landing of industrial vessels already fishing in Liberian deep seas, create the atmosphere for huge employment across coastal counties in Liberia, and attract investment opportunities for the operations of multiple cold storages for post-harvest, among others, the release said. 

Shortly those facilities along the route to the Mesurado Pier office will be demolished for the commencement of road work toward the fishing facility near coast guard base on Bushrod Island, the release stated.

South Africa Recognizes NaFAA’s Success

In a related development, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of South Africa to Liberia, Prof. Iqbal Jhazbhay says his government is witnessing what he termed as “immense transformation within the Liberian Fisheries sector under the leadership of Madam Emma Metieh Glassco.

Jhazbhay made the comment over the weekend when he held a meeting with Augustine M. Manoballah, Deputy Director General for Administration at NaFAA. 

The South African Ambassador had gone to pay a courtesy visit to the office of NaFAA. 

Jhazbhay said since his country was a longtime partner to Liberia and the fisheries sector was one of those witnessing transformation, it was prudent to meet those at the helm of authorities to extend gratitude. 

“So, we thought it was important to have a direct engagement with authorities here to congratulate you on the developments that have unfolded.” 

Earlier, Manoballah called on the Government of South Africa through its embassy near Monrovia to assist in the construction of post harvesting facilities for fishers and fishmongers in the country. 

“This could help improve the handling of fish products in Liberia,” Manoballah said.

The NaFAA’s Deputy Director General, on behalf of his boss, lauded the South African Ambassador for the visit, while expressing optimism for collaboration.

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Two of the many Beneficiaries displaying their cheques