The Minister of Finance and Development Planning, and Chair for Focal Points Chair for the African Peer Review or APR, Amara Mohammed Konneh, has recounted numerous achievements by Liberia since it became part of the African Peer Review Mechanism or APRM in 2011.
“Liberia is, therefore, proud to have ascended to the APRM in 2011, and to have played, since then, a critical role in advancing the mechanism. Even before our accession, Liberia served as an exemplary flag bearer, with former head of state and chairperson of the governance Commission, Dr. Amos Sawyer, serving in 2009 as chairperson of the APR panel of Eminent Persons, charges with overseeing the conduct of country peer review across the continent,” Minister Konneh recounted.
He gave the catalog at the opening of a two-day multi-stakeholders forum Thursday of the National Governing Council on the African Peer Review Mechanism held at Shark’s Business Center conference hall near the James Spriggs Payne Airfield in Sinkor, Monrovia.
According to Minister Konneh, in 2013 with near unanimous approval, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf assumed the chairmanship of the APR forum of heads of States and governments, providing leadership to ensure the full integration of the Mechanism into the African Union or AU system.
He said, “It is important to note, that despite our development challenges at home, Liberia continues to shine in the fulfillment of our core regional, continent and international obligation in the promotion of democracy, rule of law, economic and social justice, and good governance.”
In the furtherance of this foreign policy objective, he added that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has aggressively pursued a strategy of engagement on several regional initiatives, and increased the visibility of Liberia’s role at the level of ECOWAS and the African Union, saying, “We have worked in the last five years to also resuscitate the Mano River Union or MRU, capacitating a sub-regional secretariat and functional country offices to foster the development cooperation that is so critical to the prosperity of the Liberian people.”
Konneh continued that these efforts resulted to the success of key infrastructure initiatives such as cross-border roads and the West Africa Power Pool Project, geared at lighting up remote areas with Ganta as a result, having 24 hours electricity and the people are now able to travel on rehabilitated roads connecting them to markets in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast.
The African Peer Review Mechanism or APRM which was established in 2003 is an African Union initiative for promoting good governance within the framework of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development or NEPAD.
The objective of the APRM are primarily to foster the adoption of policies, standards and practices that lead to political stability, high economic growth, sustainable development and accelerated sub-regional and continental economic integration through experience sharing and reinforcement of successful and best practices, including identifying deficiencies and assessment of requirement for capacity building.
By Ben P. Wesee