Foreign Affairs Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan has underscored the need for more investment in building the capacity of the young people of Liberia if we to create a middle income economy as envisaged in the National Vision 2030.
Minister Ngafuan spoke at the graduation of Class Two of the President's Young Professionals Program (PYP), at the C. Cecil Dennis Hall on Monday 21 January, 2012. The PYPP is a two-year merit-based training program for young Liberians who are thereafter incorporated into the Civil Service.
Minister Ngafuan lamented the fact that limited job openings are being taken up by foreigners for the simple reason of the shortage of competent Liberians to fill some of the jobs that have been created. "It is a frustrating anomaly that at a time when an increasing number of our people are clamoring for jobs, we still have to confront the uncomfortable reality of the shortage of competent Liberians to fill these vacancies," he added.
Minister Ngafuan used the occasion to caution his fellow mentors at various ministries and agencies, against mentoring young Liberians into laziness, indiscipline, and cutting corners and called on them to mentor young Liberians into excellence, professionalism, patriotism and integrity.
According to Liberia's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dean of the Cabinet, the task of restoring and expanding Liberia's physical infrastructure has been colossal; but even more colossal has been the task of rebuilding our soft infrastructure, especially rebuilding our human capital to effectively respond to the demands and exigencies of today and the future.
Minister Ngafuan said that PYPs wear a badge of honor on their heads because the President whose title they carry, is a Nobel Prize Laureate, an illustrious African Leader, and a top-notch professional of no mean stature, and as the President wakes up every morning with a consuming passion to transform Liberia, they too must wake up every morning fired up with a desire to contribute in no small way to Liberia's transformation.