The United Nations Population Fund has stressed the need for greater political and financial commitments to family planning in Liberia if the country is to make universal access to reproductive health and women’s empowerment a reality.
UNFPA Liberia Country Representative Dr. Oluremi Sogunro said access to family planning alone can reduce unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortions and maternal deaths and disabilities, and help save the lives of women and their children.
“Access to family planning can also allow women to better space their births, which increases the mother’s chances of surviving childbirth,” Dr. Sogunro added.
Dr. Sogunro spoke recently at a program marking the observance of the 23rd Annual Member’s Assembly and 60th Anniversary Celebration of the Planned Parenthood Association of Liberia (PPAL) in Monrovia. He promised UNFPA’s continuous support to ensure that every Liberian is free to make choices about his or her sexuality and wellbeing without discrimination.
Sogunro commended PPAL for the partnership in contributing towards the development of Liberia.
“Since 1979 when UNFPA established a field office in Liberia, we have been working with state and non-state actors and in particular with PPAL in our collective quest to ensure good health and promote well-being for all Liberians at all ages. This goal calls for achieving universal access to sexual and reproductive healthcare, reducing the national maternal death, and ending the AIDS pandemic by 2030,” Dr. Sogunro said.
“PPAL at 60, Locally Owned, Globally Connected: Working for Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights and Choices in Liberia,” was the theme of the anniversary celebration.
PPAL, formerly Family Planning Association of Liberia (FPAL), is a not-for-profit, volunteer, non-governmental and non-political organization that complements the efforts of the Government of Liberia in the areas of sexual and reproductive health and rights since its establishment in 1956.
In 1972, based on a presidential proclamation, the association was incorporated into Liberia’s health programs and enacted into law by the government in 1976.