The Eligibility Team coordinating Liberia’s compliance on the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA-Liberia) says Liberia must work harder because there have been changes to the MCC methodology and new indicators have been added.
From August 9 – 11, the Government of Liberia Technical committee on the MCC Eligibility convened the retreat to orientate the officials on the 20 MCC eligibility indicators and emphasized their duties to implement actions and report them.
About 35 representatives of government ministries and agencies, whose duties relate to the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) eligibility indicators, attended the retreat in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, and planned series of actions to improve Liberia’s performance on the MCC score card.
Countries now have to pass 12, instead of the previous 10 of the 20 indicators to be eligible.
MCC Deputy Resident Country Director, Kevin George, spoke of the importance of the MCC eligibility indicators at the retreat and the US government agency’s support to development projects in most developing countries.
MCA-Liberia is a legal, independent and autonomous agency of the Government of Liberia created by an Act of the Legislature on October 23, 2015. MCA-Liberia administers the compact between the Liberian and United States governments, and supports the electricity and road sectors in Liberia. MCA-Liberia Compact grant is made possible by the generosity of the American people through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC).
Liberia became eligible in 2015 and signed a compact grant agreement of US$257M, managed by Millennium Challenge Account-Liberia, to rehabilitate the energy sector and plan the foundation for periodic road maintenance in the country.
At the retreat, MCA-Liberia Director of Communications and Outreach, Alphonso Zeon, briefed the participants on the implementation progress of the MCC compact projects.
MCC grouped its indicators into three categories, including Ruling Justly, Economic Freedom and Investing in people. A country now needs to pass 12 out of 20 indicators, inclusive of the Control of Corruption indicator, which must be passed.
In its 2018 scorecard, Liberia passed 10 of the 20 indicators, including the Control of Corruption indicator.
The country continues to do well in the areas of Political Rights, Civil Liberties and Freedom of Information indicators, under Ruling Justly.
Regarding Economic Freedom, Liberia passed Inflation, Access to Credit, Trade Policy, Business Startup and Gender in the Economy.
Beginning 2019, MCC will update the questions under Gender in the Economy indicator to provide for an expanded index that measures the extent to which laws provide women with equal capacity to participate in the economy, get a job, own property, go to court and be protected from violence.
Under Investing in People, Liberia only passed Health Expenditure indicator.
Comparatively in the West African region, Ghana did well over Liberia, passing 15 of the 20 indicators, including Control of Corruption with a score of 0.64 for an indicator with a zero Median.