The NEWS (Monrovia)

27 February 2013

Liberia: Ellen On Hiring Disabled

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has instructed relevant agencies to begin the employment of 300 health workers and over 500 teachers trained by the Government of Liberia.

President Sirleaf said it was fair to absorb health workers and teachers who had been trained at government's expense. She instructed the Minister of Finance, Amara Konneh, to raise the funds for the hiring, even if it meant reducing the supply of gasoline to government officials.

On the final day of a two-day Cabinet Retreat held near Monrovia at the weekend, Ministers discussed their 90-day deliverables under the new Liberia Development Alliance (LDA) - the platform that will move Liberia from activity-based to results-focused interventions in implementing the Agenda for Transformation toward achieving the National Vision 2030.

The LDA is coordinating the development initiatives of the private sector, development partners and civil society, to ensure that they align with government's priorities.

According to an Executive Mansion release, President Sirleaf's instructions followed a presentation made by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare on its 90-day targets and goals under the framework of the Liberia Development Alliance, as lined up in the Agenda for Transformation.

The presentation, which the Liberian leader termed as impressive, pointed at quantitative objectives that included an appeal to absorb the trained health workers in order to deal with manpower challenges at various health facilities.

President Sirleaf included teachers in her directive after Education Minister Etmonia Tarpeh also made a plea for the hiring of recent graduates of the Rural Teachers' Training Institutes in Kakata, Zorzor and Webbo, located in Margibi, Lofa and River Gee counties, respectively.

While calling for the employment of teachers, President Sirleaf also expressed disappointment at the way the education sector is operating, describing it as "a mess that needs a complete overhaul." After listening to the presentation by the Deputy Minister for Instruction, Dr. Mator Kpangbai, she characterized the Ministry's deliverables, in its 90-day plan, as mere talk and she doubted the Ministry's ability to execute the plan.

In her remarks, President Sirleaf also instructed all government ministries and agencies to employ at least one disabled person, especially in the area of financial management, where she believed they will demonstrate a high level of honesty and efficiency in their area of assignment.

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