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UN-Habitat, MIA Climaxed One-Day Joint NHC,TST Meeting

By Bill W. Cooper

The UN-Habitat and the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) with funding from the Cities Alliance yesterday concluded a one-day National Habitat Committee and Technical Support Team Member’s workshop in Monrovia.

The workshop which was held in the conference room of the Monrovia City Cooperation (MCC) brought face-to-face MCC Mayor, Jefferson Koijee, MIA Deputy Minister for Urban Affairs, Paulita C.C. Wie, the Cities Alliance representative, Andrew Senjovu, and the UN-Habitat representatives, as well as over 80 participants from the Cities Alliance, MIA, the MCC, Paynesville City Corporation (PCC), Civil Society, and other development partners.

The conference was also geared towards “The reviewing of Liberia’s Diagnostic Note, and to provide a forum for engagement and exchanges on Liberia’s urbanization status for both National Habitat Committee and Technical Support Team members, as well as provide a briefing platform on the upcoming National Urban Policy activities.”

   Speaking at the opening of the workshop, the MIA Deputy Minister for Urban Affairs, Paulita C.C. Wie said that the NHC and the TST program started in 2016 which has been supported by Cities Alliance, noting that by 2017, the policy process through feasibility studies did identify 10 priority areas for discussion.

According to her, the program also focuses on poverty reduction and cross cutting issues i.e. human rights, gender, climate change, emphasizing that the entire process is in five stages ranging from the feasibility phase, diagnosis, implementation and monitoring and evaluation.

She added that the Urbanization process in Liberia context is defined as growing population in cities and township, noting that Liberia is urbanizing rapidly due to migration and high fertility rates, which she said are posing a range of challenges and opportunities.

Madam Wie further stressed the need for the provision of infrastructure development, basic services such as roads, electricity, water, healthcare, sanitation, education trading, industrial activities continue to grow with the population of cities.

“No country has reached middle income without urbanization. With population growth comes an increase in the economic activity, environmental and humanitarian impacts contribute to the national economy,” she stressed.

Earlier, the MCC boss, Jefferson koijee lauded Un-Habitat, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Cities Alliance for organizing the workshop which he said is very timely amid the coronavirus pandemic that has engulfed the country.

 Mayor Koijee further pledged the MCC unflinching support towards the projects which he said will bring significant dividends to the country’s economy, healthcare system, educational system and other sectors of the nation.

Also in remarks, the head of UN-Habitat Policy Legislation and Governance Section, Remy Sietchiping and the Officer in Charge of the Cities Alliance, Senjovu Andrews pledged their various entities’ unflinching supports towards the completion and success of the program.

Cities Alliance Senjovu Andrews further stated that the ongoing support to the Government of Liberia by Cities Alliance Liberia Country Program through UN-Habitat in developing a NUP as part of a broader endeavor is aimed at poverty reduction and fostering sustainable and resilient Liberian cities, alluding, “The NUP process in Liberia is also anchored on close partnerships with the Ministry of Internal Affairs and other stakeholders.

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