‘Systemic Inequalities Still Persist’

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Vice President Taylor and other guests displayed copies of the 2019 HDR documents.

VP Taylor at launch of 2019 Global Human Development Report

By Alloycious David, contributor

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning on Monday, December 9, 2019 launched the 2019 Global Human Development Report (GHDR) in Monrovia.

The report, which highlights Liberia’s position and suggests ways of making improvement, was launched by Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor at the Monrovia City Hall.

The report reveals that despite unprecedented progress against poverty, hunger and disease; systemic inequalities are still present.

“And they (systemic inequalities) are deeply affecting social cohesion, economic growth, and public trust and confidence in the social contracts citizens have with their governments, institutions and among themselves,” UNDP Resident Representative, Pa Lamin Beyai told the launch, which attracted some government officials and representatives of Liberia’s development partners.

He said in addition to differences in earnings, inequality is also about unequal distribution of wealth and power, and the entrenched social and political norms.

The first release of the Human Development Report – a flagship publication for UNDP produced periodically to promote development discourse – claimed the world’s attention, because it presented a different way of measuring progress beyond income.

The HDR’s accompanying Human Development Index (HDI), one of the most comprehensive measures that ranks countries by their level of human development, remains a powerful voice for almost three decades.

Beyai lauded the Minister of Finance and his team for their technical inputs and advice and said their contributions are clear demonstrations of the importance the government attaches to its partnership with the UNDP for which it will remain grateful.

Vice President Taylor lauded the UNDP family for providing her the opportunity to participate as key launcher of the 2019 UNDP Global Human Development Report

According to her, the intent of the information being provided in the report lies at the heart of an international assessment of all Nations, including Liberia, and provides an average measure of basic human development achievements in a Country; especially amongst those most vulnerable.

“It is also an assessment of how Nations rank amongst other Nations of the World,” she adds.

Vice President Taylor indicated that though Liberia ranks 176 out of 189 Nations; the indices assessed as the basis for ranking are reflected in our Government’s Development framework under the Pro-poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development; which seeks to provide better access, increased equality and ensure inclusion for all.

The vice president disclosed that based on the findings presented, Governments, Policy Makers, International and national development partners get a clear picture of the prevailing situation in order to utilize data presented to jointly craft new policies, plans and prescriptions which would help Governments tackle priority issues to fill in the gaps towards achieving the SDG’s 2030 commitment.

She explained that for nations that fall below acceptable levels, the report finally calls for a deliberate robust shift in national development agendas towards holistic community based development which target the need for changes in programs which affect the most vulnerable persons at risk of being left behind; with the focus on improving performances for the SDG 2030 platform.

The report, Madam Taylor noted, further reminds all and sundry that the world is facing an increased threat to the eradication of inequalities, as studies show a decline in the key drivers of inequalities.

“Nevertheless this decline; under shadows of competing emerging dynamics of persistent issues such as globalization, climate change, environmental degradation and technological advances; demand strong political will, cohesive governance structures, new visions, new blueprints and new approaches in policies and programs at both national and global levels,” she stressed.

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