Gbarpolu Citizens, NGOs Hold Development Meeting

By: Natoe Jallah


Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

September 15, 2004

A one-day consultative meeting aimed at discussing the development needs of the citizens of Gbarpolu County was recently held in Bopolu among the citizens and all NGOs operating in the county.

In a chat with this paper after the meeting in Bopolu, the superintendent of the county, William Seh, said the meeting was also attended by the Civil Affairs Department of UNMIL, UNHCR, Hope International and other NGOs operating in the county as well as chiefs, elders, zoes and the citizens from the five districts.

He said, the major concern for now is the road condition, because in the absence of good roads, there can be no development. He indicated that as Liberians are about to return home in early October, the purpose of the meeting was to negotiate with relevant organizations that have promised to commence the renovation works on the road linking Bomi County to the entire Gbarpolu County.

According Mr. Seh, USAID has expressed its interest in reconditioning the roads in the county.

The Gbarpolu Superintendent also disclosed that health and sanitation programs are picking up gradually, based on the information given them by the health officer in the county. He told them (citizens) at the meeting that more clinics and health centers have been opened in the county and has received commitment from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare for the improvement of health sector of the county.

On the question of security, Superintendent Seh stressed that the security has improved since the DDRR program began even without the deployment of UNMIL in the county. He said ex-combatants are cooperating with both the citizens and county officials, adding, “There has not been any incident [of security harassment] in my county as compared to other counties around the country.”

He then extended his thanks to Hope International Mission in Liberia in collaboration with UNHCR for constructing housing units, hand-pumps and latrines in Totoquelleh and Lowomah Towns for citizens who are expected to return home through UNHCR in early October.

Meanwhile, Superintendent Seh is calling on other citizens of the county to return as the county is now all right, adding that the citizens must cooperate with UNHCR, an agency that is responsible for bringing them home to join their fellow citizens for reconstruction.

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by the Forum newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.