New World Bank’s Country Manager to Liberia, Ms. Larisa Leshchenko on Tuesday September 27, held her first interactive meeting with local media executives, giving an update on the Bank’s contribution to the Liberian economy.
Flanked by her senior staffs, Ms. Leshchenko hailed the importance of such gathering saying the media play an important role in the development of any country, including Liberia.
She said as a development partner to Liberia, the Bank believes that it is important to always engage the media to ensure that its activities are highlighted to the people of Liberia who are the main beneficiaries of the their support to the Government of Liberia.
At the meeting which was well attended by senior local media executives, Ms. Leshchenko, averred that the meeting will pave the way for continuation of a Quarterly Media Dialogue, where the Bank will update the media on its project portfolios in the country.
“The hosting of our Quarterly Dialogue is a fulfillment of the World Bank Access to Information Policy reached in 2010. We consider the media an important partner in our work in results delivery,” she said.
The World Bank Country Manager said, as a knowledge institution, the bank shall endeavor to have its professional colleagues who regularly visit Liberia to engage and strengthen the local media knowledge and skills in various thematic issues.
“These issues,” she said “range from the economy, to the environment, public financial management, environment, health, and a wide range of issues critical for Liberia’s growth and development.
She said once these skills are strengthened in these areas, the bank remains confident that the media here would be adequately equipped to cover these technical areas. “We are also going to work with the Liberia Economic Journalists Association (LEJA) for capacity development. I want to use this occasion to appeal to all of you media executives here to nominate colleagues of your organization to work with LEJA leadership to broaden the membership and to ensure that economic issues are adequately covered in Liberia. We will endeavor to have you involved in some of our stakeholders’ engagements. This is very critical for your involvement as we discuss on issues critical for Liberia’s development,” she added.
Following her remarks, there were several issues of concerns raised by the media executives, ranging from projects, and the bank’s conditionality to projects evaluations, value for money and the Ebola Fund.-New Dawn