Internal Affairs and Carter Center Hold Orientation for Local Gov’t Officials

GANTA, Nimba – The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Carter Center Liberia have concluded an orientation meant to acquaint local government officials with their newly assigned duties and functions.

The three-day conference was held in Ganta and saw officials from the 15 counties participate.

Deputy Minister for Operations Emmet Reeves said the orientation was necessary because many of the officials were newly appointed. He noted that if the orientation were not held, the officials would perform poorly.

“In the counties, only 3 out of the 15 county superintendents were retained from the former administration of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, [Montserrado, Nimba, and River Gee],” Reeves noted. “Almost all of the 15 assistant superintendents for development, 15 assistant superintendents for fiscal affairs, 15 county inspectors, and others are new.”

He said all of the newly appointed officials had “little or no understanding of the mandate, functions, and understanding of the overall workings of the Ministry of Internal Affairs” and the positions they were appointed to serve.

“Against this backdrop, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, under the able leadership of Hon. Varney A. Sirleaf is partnering with the Carter Center to conduct this training of key appointed officers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.” He said.

Meanwhile, Internal Affairs Minister Varney A. Sirleaf has expressed dissatisfaction that local officials often abandon their duties in the counties and are often found in Monrovia, without the knowledge of the ministry.

“All county officials are encouraged to remain in their area of assignment,” Sirleaf said, advising officials who need to travel to notify the ministry of such absence from their post. He did not announce any penalties against officials caught violating the rule.

Sirleaf also called on donors and collaborating partners to notify the ministry when conducting workshops or programs that require local officials to move from one county to another.

Featured photo by Arrington Ballah

Arrington Ballah

A resident of Ganta, Nimba County, Arrington has a background working with credit unions and other organizations dedicated to rural finance.

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