By: Washington Tumay Watson –email@example.com
MONROVIA-The current economic situation faced by the country is not only hampering ordinary Liberians but equally places hiccups on the County Development Fund, a program initiated by the former Government of Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, an official of Grand Kru County disclosed.
The government of soccer legend George Weah is said to be struggling in keeping the program at the same level his predecessor left it.
The County Development Fund (CDF) aims to take holistic development programs to the hinterland.
At a consultative meeting organized by FERD on WASH Financing in Congo Town last week, Grand Kru County Assistant Superintendent for Development Joe Sekpeh said the government reduced the county development funding from two hundred thousand United States dollars to one hundred thousand United States dollars.
Though this paper could not verify Sekpeh’s claims, he went on saying that the government’s decision emanated from the economic constraints the country faces as a result of the Corona Virus Pandemic affecting all countries worldwide.
On the basis of such situation, he told the gathering the county leadership streamlined the county development budget in order to support the WASH sector which he describes as very important.
He said one of the challenges they face inculcating WASH in the county’s development budget is the fact that the CDF mainly focuses on infrastructure development.
The Grand Kru County Development Superintendent used the event to appreciate FERD for the level of work done in the WASH sector of the county.
Sekpeh equally urged them to also focus on intensifying WASH awareness in the communities they are working with.
Also at the consultative meeting with FERD, United Youth and county authorities on WASH financing, Superintendent Dais Yloton urged FERD to extend its programs to other districts in the county.
Presently, FERD is working in ten communities, providing education to the community dwellers about water sanitation and hygiene (WASH).
FERD Program Officer Yuku Ford in an overview of their activities in the WASH sector said the objective of the meeting was to engage the county authority relative to the investment into the WASH sector of the county.
Madam Ford urged county authorities to ensure that WASH is included in the county development Fund budget.
FERD is concerned and focused on how multinational concessions operating in the county can provide clear budget line in the area of WASH for the citizens who are feeling the brunt of open defecation.
The Executive Director of United Youth, Timothy Kpeh, said the meeting was part of the CSO’s advocacy engagement at both national and local levels on how the county development fund can be inclusive of WASH in the budget.