Liberia’s Water and Sewer Corporation or LWSC will now be run as a business entity, to generate profit and contribute its quota to the national budget, the Corporation’s Board Chair Kebbeh Collins has said.
Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a raw water pipeline in White Plains, Friday November 1, 2019, Ms. Collins said the move is to enable the effective distribution of services to the millions of Liberians who rely on the LWSC for safe drinking water.However, she was quick to point out that to accomplish this goal, the LWSC is expected to embark upon a new metering system and create a customer database to ensure the proper distribution and collection of revenue.
She said with the current arrangement, the Corporation does not know the location of many of its customers, adding that there is a need to identify their locations.But this new measure does not come without a huge cost though. Ms. Collins said to be able to achieve this ambitious goal and get LWSC making profit and contributing to the national budget, it requires am upgrading of the company’s current infrastructure and equipment to work effectively.
Painting a gloomy picture of the current state of affairs at the company,Ms. Collins said the cost of the electricity require to pump water to Monrovia and it’s environ is too high, adding that right now the company is struggling to pay its staff and operational cost.
Meanwhile, the ceremony itself could serve as a booster to the LWSC ambitious future plan. This is so because the propose pipeline project which is part of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact with Liberia under the energy project will replace the original 36-inch diameter pipeline that was destroyed during the civil war with a new 48-inch diameter pipeline.The new pipeline, according to United States Ambassador Christian Elder, the new pipeline is approximately 5 km long and generally follows the original alignment of the pipeline with small deviations.
Amb. Elder said when constructed the new pipeline will deliver water from the dam using gravity flow, saving LWSC US$780,000 a year in electricity cost to pump water to the water treatment plant.The construction of the project is expected to be completed in June of 2020, just 6 months shy of the completion of the 5 years MCC Liberia Compact.
Liberia fail 12 of the 20 indicators of the 2020 scorecard. The MCC Scorecard measures a country’s performance in three key areas: economic freedom, ruling justly, and investing in its people. Countries have to pass 10 of 20 indicators and must pass the Control of Corruption indicator to become eligible.Liberia passed the control of corruption indicator this year, but significant work is needed across Government and wider society regarding public perception of corruption. –Othello B. Garblah