-To Resolve Outstanding Obligations, Or Else…
The Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Liberia has written the Liberian Government through the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs reminding him that the United Nations strictly adheres to its fiduciary responsibility toward its donors and members states.
In a letter to Minister Nathaniel F. McGill signed by Yacoub El Hillo, he reminded the Liberian Government that explicitly guidelines and high operational standards to safeguard UN funds against misuse and integrity risks are yielding principles underpinning their work.
El Hillo said to strengthen national ownership and accountability for development results, the UN Agencies, Funds and programmes are gradually moving from Direct Implementation Modality (DIM) to National Implementation Modality (NIM) under Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfers (HACT) framework where cash is transferred to national implementing partners to carry out development activities agreed in the annual work plans.
“For implementing partners to receive cash in advance, they must be micro assessed to ensure that they have good financial management capacity (i.e. Accounting, procurement, reporting, internal controls etc.) and a system for recording accounting transactions and appropriate filing of financial documentation.
“Under the National Implementing Modality (NIM), we expect that implementing partners assume full responsibility for the effective use of the resources advanced to them and for reporting, fairly and accurately, on project progress against agreed work plans in accordance with the reporting schedule. They are expected to maintain documentation and evidence that describes the proper and prudent use of project resources,” El Hillo said in a letter on social media over the weekend.
Meanwhile, EL Hillo said for the last few months several agencies have experienced challenges in getting timely and accurate reports from their government counterparts thereby delaying implementation of essential services and advisory support to the people of Liberia.
“In the long term, this may lead to withholding of funding by our partners for UN Programmes in Liberia with all attendant negative consequences. In extreme situations where the cash advance modality is not being used correctly by implementing partners, the UN agencies, the fund and progrmmes may discontinue and revert to Direct Implementation Modality (DIM) to avoid risk of delays in programs implementation,” he said.
The UN Resident Coordinator further said “to this effect, we would like to request your Excellency to pass the necessary directive to all government implementing partners to expeditiously resolve any outstanding obligations, for us to be able to fully implement the 2019 workplans to achieve the planned development results.”
However, El Hillo has commended the Liberian Government for recognizing the UN stem in the country as a central provider of a high-quality technical support, policy advice, development assistance in wide variety of thematic areas.
“We look forward to continuing improving the efficiency and effectiveness of our development cooperation with the government of Liberia by joining forces in achieving the Pro Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PADP) over the coming years,” he assured. TNR