Global Funds Gives over US$23m
…To Fight HIV/AIDS, other diseases

The Inquirer
Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

Posted June 14, 2004

The international group, Global Funds has approved a Grant of US$24.3million to help in Liberia’s fight against HIV/AIDS pandemic, Malaria and Tuberculosis; as Patrick K. Wrokpoh reports.

The grant will be managed by UNDP/Liberia under its Resident Coordinator Mr. Abou Moussa.
The signing ceremony for the US$24.3 million grant held on Friday in the cabinet room of the Executive Mansion, was witnessed by NTGL Vice Chairman Wesley Momo Johnson. A body charged with the implementation of the different programs under the grant, the Liberia Coordinating Mechanism, the UNDP and the Civil Society were the signatories to the agreement.

In keeping with the terms of the grant, the funds will be managed by the UNDP/Liberia office with a high degree of transparency and accountability expected of the implementing institutions of the respective programs.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Health Minister Dr. Peter Coleman, who signed on behalf of the Liberia Coordinating Mechanism, assured that the funds will be used with a high degree of transparency and accountability to boost the health sector of the country, as he is of the opinion that the funds will greatly alleviate the country’s health problems.

Dr. Coleman stressed that as the rest of the world will be watching Liberia, the strict adherence to the guidelines set for the use of the funds by the special steering committee should be followed.
The Health Minister then commended the United Nations Secretary General Dr. Kofi Annan and the Board of Directors of the Global Funds for making the money available to Liberia ahead of other nations that have also applied for such funds.

For her part, UNDP Country Representative Madam Elizabeth Odour-Noah said, there is a structure management that has been put in place to ensure the proper management of the funds. She called for the proper utilization of the funds stressing the need for accountability and transparency.

Also speaking, UNDP Resident Coordinator Abou Moussa said, it is the responsibility of all parties to ensure that the funds are used for the intended purposes with a high degree of transparency and accountability.

He said though Liberia as a country finds itself at the bottom of the development index, it can make a great difference if the funds are used with transparency and accountability.

Mr. Moussa added that although the funds can not do everything overnight when it comes to moving the country forward, the availability of the grant if used with transparency and efficiency, can alleviate the suffering of the hundreds of thousands of Liberian people.

Delivering the closing remarks at the program, NTGL Vice Chairman Wesley Johnson expressed government’s gratitude for the grant, stressing that if the amount is used prudently, it would make a difference to help shape the present poor state of the health delivery system of the country.
He added that the nation is under a microscope and as such, funds received from donors must be used prudently.

The program was attended by representatives from the health sector, UNICEF, AFRICARE, Churches, among others.

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