Boakai Administration Makes Strides in First 100 Days, But Challenges Remain Says Naymote

By Pewu Y. Sumo/0555862711

MONROVIA – The Liberian civil society group Naymote Partners for Democratic Development has released a comprehensive report on President Joseph Nyumah Boakai’s performance in his first 100 days in office.

Having been inaugurated on January 22, 2024, the Unity Party led government under the watchful eyes of President Joseph Nyuma Boakai released a document titled “100-Day Deliverables,” outlining twelve (12) key objectives aimed at achieving targeted milestones within the initial 100 days. The main goal of this plan was to demonstrate short-term progress, laying the groundwork for a broader National Development Agenda, as articulated in the “ARREST” agenda, while fostering transparency and momentum for transformative change nationwide. Naymote in press release said that accomplishing these milestones is vital for establishing credibility and trust with the public and laying the foundation for fulfilling broader campaign promises over the next six (6) years.

The Boakai-led administration has tackled a robust plan with 107 deliverables spanning multiple sectors since taking office. Of these, 11 constituting 10% are completed, 45constituting 42% are in progress, and 51 constituting 48% remain unrated due to the lack of available information, signalling the need for proactive measures to fulfil commitments to the Liberian populace.

Notably, actions have been observed in sectors like telecommunications, aviation, and agriculture. For instance, agricultural initiatives include restructuring governance boards and devising plans for equipment mobilization, while the telecommunications sector saw the revival of the e-Liberia website for improved public service access.

Infrastructure Development and Public Works Initiatives: Notable progress has been made in road infrastructure projects across the country, including major corridors like Toe’s Town to Zwedru and Salayea to Voinjama. Additionally, vital drainage cleaning exercises are underway in central Monrovia and other areas, enhancing urban resilience and mitigating flood risks. Of the 11 interventions under the Ministry of Public Works actions were taken on all but none were completed.

Telecommunications Advancements: The reactivation of the e-Liberia website and LTC’s introduction of a 24-bandary management system signify significant advancements in digital services and revenue generation. Together with the constitution of a committee to review contracts and partnerships, and the introduction of new Quality of Services Regulations, the government has “completed” 4 out of 11 initiatives committed to fulfilling within the first 100

days in Office in sector two (2) were in progress and five (5) were not rated. The Committee has reviewed four (4) major contracts and partnerships including the Space wide- responsible for mobile networks, K Comm – responsible for visa, and CBL -data center.

Education, gender, youth, and social protection initiatives: We commend the President for setting aside a date for the conduct of the national county sports

meet, constituting the Board of the Higher Commission on Education, and budget, within the fiscal year 2024, for the payment of WAEC Fees for all 9th and 12th graders. However, despite the government’s reaffirmed dedication to narrowing the education gap among the youth population, no action has been taken to optimize the free tuition program, settle outstanding scholarships for local and international students, or complete the construction of 25 schools that are nearing completion.

Nonetheless, it is worth noting that the Ministry of Gender has initiated assessments of rape cases in the southeastern counties, marking a crucial first step toward fulfilling the government’s commitment to conducting a nationwide assessment of rape cases. Overall, out of the outlined deliverables, the government has only achieved 2 working toward achieving 2 of the cluster deliverables.

Healthcare and Public Safety: Overall, the government is making attempts to achieve all commitments made in this deliverable cluster. Recognizing the urgency of addressing public health challenges, the government has declared drug and substance abuse as a national public health emergency.

President Boakai’s announcement of tough anti-drug measures underscores the administration’s resolve to combat substance abuse effectively, safeguarding the well-being of Liberian citizens.

Additionally, efforts to enhance access to essential medicines and medical commodities have been bolstered through partnerships with organizations like Medicine for All People (MAP).

The recent donation of medication through a partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) underscores the government’s commitment to improving healthcare delivery and ensuring equitable access to vital resources.

Political and Fiscal Governance Reforms: Progress has been observed in governance reform measures within various government institutions, though challenges remain in areas like contract awarding processes and fiscal rules introduction. Notably, progress has been observed within the Liberia Maritime Authority (LiMA), particularly in the establishment of a Safety and Emergency Response Mechanism, the development of a multi-year planning process, and

the initiation of the reconciliation process to achieve Revenue Accountability.

More so, efforts within the National Road Fund (NRF) to develop managerial and

Administrative procedures have seen some advancement, but initiatives like Policy/Political enforcement for accurate accounting are yet to be rated. Similarly, the National Transit Authority (NTA) has yet to develop effective management systems and procedures. The Ministry of Transport has not undertaken any initiatives towards achieving the Assets Verification and Accounting and Assessment of Traffic and Vehicle Registration Section.

Similarly, the Administrative Revision of Service Charges to be carried out by the Liberia Telecommunication Authority (LTA) remains unrated.

The Liberia Agency for Community Empowerment (LACE) is yet to initiate any of the planned governance reforms, while President Boakai has constituted the Liberia Civil Aviation Authority (LCAA) Board of Directors, but initiatives like amending the LCAA Act are yet to be rated.

In other sectors, such as the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

In economic and financial governance, there have been no efforts made towards the introduction of fiscal rules, while progress has been made in conducting audits. Some progress has been seen in certain sectors like the Central Agriculture Research Institute (CARI), particularly with regards to the constitution of its Board, but nothing significant has been done to conduct a performance review of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Overall, out of the 33-governance reform-related deliverables, 18 remain “not rated,” indicating a need for proactive actions to be taken by the incumbent President to engender improvement in Liberia’s governance framework.

Agriculture and Food Security: The President has articulated a range of initiatives aimed at advancing agricultural development and ensuring food security. These include finalizing the Liberia Food Security Crisis Preparedness Plan and zero postharvest loss strategy, establishing an Agriculture and Industrial Development Bank, aligning intervention projects with national agricultural goals, and revising

the Cooperative Societies Act to ease seafood exports, among others. Regrettably, concrete actions towards achieving these deliverables have not yet been documented.

Nevertheless, President Boakai has constituted Central Agriculture Research Institute’s (CARI) boards which reflects strides in governance reform as earlier indicated. Progress is also apparent in CARI’s development of a plan to enhance research capacity, which has been submitted for approval. Additionally, the ongoing pursuit of a National Agriculture Development Plan with support from the UN FAO underscores a commitment to long-term agricultural advancement.

Overall, among the 12 key deliverables, 3 are marked as “completed,” 1 as “in progress,” while the remaining 8 are designated as “not rated.” This indicates a mixed status of achievement and underscores the need for sustained efforts to realize the outlined goals.

Looking Ahead

Naymote recommends that the government prioritize realistic goal-setting, improve transparency in contract awarding, and enhance access to information for the public. The organization also pledged to continue monitoring the government’s performance and advocating for good governance.

Naymote Partners for Democratic Development is a leading Liberian civil society group that was founded in 2001 with focused on promoting democracy, transparency, and civic engagement.

Methodology:

The project utilized a comprehensive approach, combining various monitoring tools to evaluate performance against the 100-day Deliverables.

• Data Extraction: All interventions were directly extracted from the 100-Day

Deliverables document to ensure accuracy and alignment with government objectives.

• Media Monitoring: Interventions were tracked through media monitoring, gathering information from diverse platforms to assess government performance accurately.

• Field Visits: On-site visits were conducted to verify project status and gather evidence, focusing on road construction sites.

• Online Surveillance: Monitoring extended to online platforms, capturing real-time information for thorough analysis.

• Official Correspondence: Written communications were sent to government officials to verify claims and ensure reporting accuracy.

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