Dear Mr. President
Thank you for the annual message and what’s contained in it. The development plans outlined in the message are thrilling and reassuring.
But in order for your dream of achieving these plans to be actualized, you need to set up a body that I would call a Special Project Implementation Unit or Taskforce whose mandate will be much stronger and more meaningful than what used to be a Presidential Project Unit at the presidency. The Unit, through oversight, will ensure a scrupulous implementation of every project announced by Mr. President.
This Special Project Implementation Unit should comprise competent and very selfless, honest and morally upright professionals and technocrats who will think more about Liberia than their pockets.
The proposed Special Project Implementation Unit will have some form of autonomy and operate somewhat independent of the ministries and agencies statutorily responsible for implementing projects.
The Unit will ensure that the durations of projects are kept and if there are hitches that are stalling the implementation of any projects, the Unit will move in fast to investigate and remove the hitches so that project timelines are met.
The Unit will investigate whether contractors are paid in time so that the inability of implementing ministries to settle them cannot cause the project to stall.
The Project Implementation Unit will report to the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs regularly and then be invited from time to time to brief the cabinet.
There should be a project implementation desk at the presidency which will be responsible to remind the Special Project Implementation Unit to be regular in reporting to the presidency.
If the Special Project Implementation Unit, which will have some legal practitioners as members, establishes that some project implementing agencies are deliberately withholding funds for contractors because contractors are unwilling to pay kickbacks, thereby causing unnecessary delays, said implementing agencies should be reported, investigated and actions taken.
The plans in the annual message are good and they provide prescription for some of our developmental challenges; but we need such an overseeing body to ensure they are fully implemented.
These are my humble thoughts.
All the best.
FORMER LEGISLATIVE CANDIDATE
DISTRICT 8, NIMBA COUNTY