Finance Minister Samuel Tweah has voiced his determination to have the most gender-sensitive budget in Liberia’s history beginning 2019/2020 budget year.
Speaking Thursday, 7 March at the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Tweah revealed that a lot of work has gone into mainstreaming gender in Liberia’s development program.
“We are going to do our best on this. Anything we do will reflect gender balance. Whether it is budget planning, execution, road development, education, and health, this will be a guiding framework”, Mr. Tweah said during the formal opening of the Gender Responsive Planning Budget Policy and Gender Responsive Planning Budget (GRBP) National Coordination Unit.
The GRPB Policy according to him was achieved through efforts of extreme collaboration with development partners.
Mr. Tweah lauds development partners for their support in mainstreaming gender in Liberia’s development approach.
He assures partners that government’s development programs will reflect gender balance.
He informs partners that government in the execution of its people-centered Pro – Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development will prioritize girls’ education and the GRBP will be used as an instrument for such purpose.
Also speaking, Deputy Finance Minister for Budget Tanneh G. Brunson, says the policy has defined a clear roadmap for mainstreaming gender responsive budget into government’s Public Finance Management (PFM) processes.
Deputy Minister Brunson says it is necessary to advocate for gender mainstreaming and equity as government implements its national development plan.
She expresses the need to integrate gender equity and to align the policy objective with the country’s development agenda and processes.
According to Madam Brunson, Liberia has come a long way in understanding the concept of gender-responsive budgeting and in recognizing the importance to adopt the implementation of GRBP.
Madam Brunson indicates that strong commitment and determination are sown in the policy design and institutional structures to address gender inequalities in the country’s PFM practices.
For his part, UN Resident Coordinator and Assistant Secretary-General Mr. Yacoub El Hillo thanks the Finance Ministry for leading the GRPB process and the opening of the unit.
Mr. Hillo says gender responsive budget is an important mechanism for ensuring greater consistency between government’s development agenda, economic growth and social commitment.
He states that the GRBP serves as a framework for the implementation of gender inclusive budgeting at the national and sub-national levels.
He adds that the GRBP is important because it determines how public funds are generated, used and who benefits from public spending.
By Lewis S. Teh –Edited by Winston W. Parley