President George Manneh Weah, on Monday issued an Executive Order repositioning the National Food Assistance Agency (NFAA).The Executive Order No.101, repositions the NFAA to embark upon a set of functions and operations under Section 1 of the Order that includes working closely with the National Steering Committee of the COVID-19 Household Food Support Program (COHFSP) by providing enumeration of household/beneficiaries and monitoring aspect to the Food Support Program.
The Order gives the NFAA authority to continue to work on other programs in the national interest, such as making school feeding program sustainable through providing what “we grow and donated food commodities” even following the cessation of the global pandemic.
This approach will bring NFAA, local farmers, international partners, and processors into cooperation, and the NFAA will provide additional markets and incomes for farmers.
The Executive Order directs that the NFAA will also purchase from farmers excess produce to be processed and stored for distribution to schools and other institutions in case of needs or emergency.
The NFAA further is mandated to introduce food stamps and free meals for various categories of people, such as the physically challenged persons, single and vulnerable parents including young children, pregnant women, and lactating mothers, the aged, sick and mal-nourished children. Others include the girl child without parental guidance and support, establish storage and processing facilities for local crops (cassava, plantain, eddoes, and rice) for distribution. This will augment food relief donation to Liberia.
The Order also authorizes the NFAA to protect the Liberian public from the harmful effects of substandard and counterfeit food commodities while ensuring their good health at all times.
In order to ensure the full realization and implementation of these objectives, NFAA will conduct a nationwide rapid assessment to collect baseline data on the prevalence of food insecurity and derive recommendations for the required support needed to reduce its effects in Liberia.
It will also conduct statistics and create a comprehensive database of both local and international food-related NGOs in Liberia, and ensure proper monitoring mechanisms of food donations from foreign sources and their ultimate distribution and supply to targeted Liberian beneficiaries and institutions.
According to the Executive Order, NFAA will ensure the continued existence of regional food banks across the country for timely interventions in food assistance during natural disasters such as floods, quakes, drought, etc.
Executive Order 101 also establishes the organizational structure of NFAA along with their respective functions and duties.