Liberia: Big Boost for Pro-Poor Agenda

20 September 2021

As Vahun District Citizens Declare Unflinching Support

The Citizens of Vahun District in Lofa County residing in Monrovia and its environs have declared their unflinching support to the much-publicized Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD) for the inclusion of the faraway district in the overall national development of the country.

Vahun District shares border with Sierra Leone and Gbarpolu County. It is approximately 105.6 miles' land area and is away from Monrovia. From Vahun to Voinjama is 90.6km, while from Vahun to Monrovia via Tubmanburg is 197km and from Vahun to Monrovia via Gbarnga is 416.6km respectively.

The Pro-Poor Agenda is the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC)-led Government's national development plan. It is a framework for inclusion, more equitable distribution of Liberia's national wealth, and a rights-based approach to national development.

Accordingly, the Citizens of Vahun District declared support to the Pro-Poor Agenda was contained in a petition statement formally presented to Montserrado County District #5 Representative and National Vice Chairman of the CDC, Thomas P. Fallah at a well-attended program held on Saturday, September 18, 2021, in Siaffa Town, Banjor Community, and Montserrado County. It brought together dozens of government officials, most of whom are citizens of Lofa County and thousands of Vahun Citizens.

Reading the petition statement on behalf of the Vahun Citizens, Clement F. Conneh, an eminent citizen of Vahun District, lamented that Vahun District is one of the districts in Liberia with the most deplorable road conditions, something which has caused serious economic hardships and has compelled the people of Vahun District to carry their crops to neighboring Sierra Leone, just 9 miles away from the district for transactions.

It can be recalled that Vahun gained its district status in 1974 and it has over 38,000 inhabitants (LISGIS 2008 NPHC) with only one health center and one secondary school.

Mr. Conneh further lamented that the only health center within the district is seriously constrained with logistics, thus making it less effective in providing health services for the people of the district which has led to numerous and untimely deaths ranging from pregnant women to that of lactating mothers.

He added that the only secondary school in the district has no library or opportunity for research, asserting that many of Vahun children (graduates) have for the past years served as voluntary teachers and are not being gainfully employed since then.

He recalled that since the inception of the Weah- led administration, none of Vahun sons and daughters has been considered for any decision-making positions, especially at the level of the central government.

"The district has numerous socioeconomic problems such as poverty, poor infrastructures, bad roads, unemployment, poor social services, and social ills. These make the district to be incompatible with the booming population that is hungry for these services. The young population is becoming dominant population groups in the district," Mr. Conneh pointed out.

Among other things, he reminded Rep. Fallah, who is also a prominent citizen of Lofa County about the current leadership crisis in the district, and asked to see attached copies of the Citizens of Vahun District Resolution and Recommendation to the national government for the said leadership for due consideration.

Responding to the petition statement, the CDC national vice-chair said the petition is wholeheartedly accepted and described it as a big boost for the Pro-Poor Agenda.

He promised to submit the petition statement to the CDC National Chairman, Mr. Mulbah K. Morlu for onward submission to President George Manneh Weah, who is also the Standard Bearer of the CDC for a prompt answer.

"In my mind, I understood this petition is a clear support to the second term bid of President Weah in 2023," Rep. Fallah accentuated.

Rep. Fallah, who received praises for his continuous contributions to the development of the country, mainly in Montserrado and Lofa Counties, urged his few Liberians to always check-mark candidates during elections before ever casting their votes. For his part, the CDC Chairman of Lofa County Chapter and Assistant Minister of Commerce and Industry, Morris Siryon, on behalf of CDC Lofa County Chapter, openly apologized for the wrongdoing of the former Commissioner Mohammed Momoh to the people of Vahun District.

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