ActionAid, Partners Launch Citizens’ Charter Report

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ActionAid Liberia in collaboration with citizens, partners and government on Tuesday officially launched the Citizens’ Charter Report on post Ebola governance and development in Monrovia.

The official launch of the report was under the theme, “In their Own Words.” It was held in Paynesville, outside Monrovia.

Lakshmi Moore, ActionAid interim Country Director said following the Ebola crisis in the country, the organization last year decided to work with communities by looking at their needs and addressing those that were not part of policies or issues affecting citizens.

Madam Moore said the direct focus of the program will be on health, education, gender and security.

The Citizens’ Charter Report is an opportunity to learn from what happened during Ebola. The document will analyze policies through community engagements and hold government responsible to provide basic services to the citizens.

“The Charter Report will serve as a guide to engage communities so that what we learn from Ebola, including weak health services and many other issues, can be addressed in the future,” Madam Moore added.

The citizens earlier expressed their concerns about the country’s poor health delivery system, which according to them, the government needs to address.

They discussed reduction in student registration fees, ensuring that teachers are well trained and paid adequately and on time, providing classroom facilities for young children, as well as cracking down on the practice of “sex for grades.”

The report was officially launched by the Director for Human Rights at the Ministry of Justice, Kutaka Togbah, who underscored the importance of security in the wake of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) drawdown by June 30.

The President of the National Rural Women of Margibi County, Esther Clarke, described the document as a “key factor to development,” because it highlights the weaknesses of the government in the implementation of health, education and security, among others.

“This document is a wakeup call for citizens and the country at large to enable everyone to work hard to strengthen the country’s health system through the training of more health workers,” she said.

Several stakeholders commended ActionAid for the report describing it as a roadmap for a better country in terms of finding solutions to the highlighted issues, while at the same time urging government to put the necessary systems into place.

The report covered several counties including Bomi, Cape Mount, Montserrado, Lofa, Grand Bassa, Gbarpolu, Bong and Margibi.

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