TVET Stakeholders Complete Five Year Policy Review

As government strives to attract more Liberians into the TVET sector, key stakeholders in the technical vocation education sector have reviewed the previous five-year policy and revised it for the next five years, beginning 2022 and ending 2027, in order to meet current day reality.

Revision and subsequent adoption of the new five-year policy was done recently, following a one-day working session held at the Boulevard Palace in Monrovia.

During the one-day session, the stakeholders reviewed the 2015 TVET policy, which ran between September 2015 and December 2020, and from June 1-10, 2021.

With deeper review of the previous policy, stakeholders were able to identify the gaps in the content and implementation of the 2015 TVET policy and how these gaps could be filled by focusing on the current economic environment and labor market skills needed to further strengthen the TVET system in Liberia.

Both missions were supported by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at the request of the Government of Liberia (GOL).

The aim was to improve the governance and regulatory framework of the TVET sector by creating an enabling environment for the acquisition of employable skills for the world of work by all categories of learners, including the youth, adults, the unemployed, and persons with disability (PWD).

It also seeks to create a robust, yet flexible, human capacity development system that is open to the changing needs of the labor market and produce a highly skilled workforce that gears to make Liberian industries, products and services increasingly competitive in the local, regional, and global markets. This will increase income-earning capacities of the informal sector workers, especially of vulnerable groups through TVET, continue life-long learning and integration into the modern economy.

The one-day meeting was also attended by the Regional Advisor for Higher Education and ICT at UNESCO, Abuja Regional Office, Abdoulaye Salifou, who spoke on behalf of Dr. Dimitri Sanga, Director of UNESCO Regional Office for West Africa.

Salifou congratulated the Liberian government and the Inter-Ministerial Task Force (IMTF) on TVET for prioritizing education and TVET in the face of the many developmental challenges facing Liberia.

He recalled that in March 2014, within the framework of the Capacity Development (CapED) program, the GoL, UNESCO, World Bank, EU and other development partners had a consultation and validated the National TVET policy 2015-2020.

He indicated the drafting, development and validation of the national TVET operational plan for the period, culminating in the validation of the TVET legislation in July 2016, is now awaiting enactment into law.

Abdoulaye Salifou noted that youth unemployment, which includes underemployment and vulnerable employment, is a major issue that could have serious consequences for social stability, national security and development for any country.

Deputy Minister for Administration, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Audrain Smith-Forbes, also lauded Liberia’s development partners for their continued support toward the development of Liberia, especially in the area of TVET.

“I want to, in a very special manner, appreciate UNESCO for its continued efforts to ensure that the governing, managing and the efficiency of the TVET systems in Liberia are met,” she lauded.

“Again, let me also thank the French Development Agency, through the International Institute for Cooperation and Development (IECD), Merci Corps, the European Union, the Swedish government for the ‘Youth Rising Project’ implementation by UNIDO and other partners for the strategies and interventions aiming to revitalize the Liberia TVET system,” she asserted.

Deputy Minister Smith-Forbes, who spoke on behalf of D. Zeogar Wilson, who is currently out of the country with the Liberia National Olympic team, emphasized that the major weakness of Liberia’s TVET system has been the absence of a comprehensive legal framework and coordinating agency to guide, direct and oversee TVET for the country.

As a result of this, she pointed out that the TVET delivery system is fragmented amongst several government ministries and agencies with different governance and management practices.

“We are hopeful that the challenges of funding will not be encountered during the implementation of the Revised TVET Policy (2022—2027), and the policy will solve the problems,” Deputy Minister Smith-Forbes added.ECOWAS Hosts Forum On Money Laundering In Liberia.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is hosting a week-long forum, “Inter-governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA)” in Liberia through the Government of Liberia Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU). The GIABA pre-assessment training forum kicked off on Monday, August 2, 2021, in Monrovia, with a cross-section of stakeholders from government financing institutions and civil society organizations.

Speaking during the opening ceremony in Monrovia, the Director General of Liberia Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), Edwin Harris, called on all stakeholders to join the FIU in battling money laundering in the country. He encouraged participants of the Week-long training to attach importance and seriousness on the exercise because it is vital to Liberia.

Director Harris told the forum that since the last visitation of GIABA Director General in Liberia, there has been significant effort toward the fight against money laundering. As part of the effort in battling the crime, he disclosed that the Ministry of Justice and President George Manneh Weah have submitted an amendment of the Penal Code and the introduction of the Anti-money Laundering Act of 2019. Those instruments, according to him, are currently before the Liberian Senate awaiting legislative action.

He explained that FIU has planned to have a one-day forum with members of the legislature to explain to them the importance of the instruments currently before them and the need to quickly legislate them. The FIU Director also revealed that the institution has concluded a national risk assessment, anti-money laundering policy and strategy plan.

For his part, the Director General of GIABA, Kimelabalou ABA, applauded Liberia for hosting the pre-assessment training workshop. He pointed out that since the first round of the assessment exercise was conducted in 2012, this is another process to evaluate the country. According to him, between 2011 and 2020 Liberia has made significant progress.

Director ABA disclosed that the outcome of the assessment exercise will help determine how donors and other international partners extend financial assistance to the country. He challenged Liberia to take the needed steps in battling money laundering. “If all the necessary measures are put into place,” he stated, “ECOWAS countries will benefit from extra foreign investments.” He furthermore encouraged FIU to get experienced officers to assist in the fight.

Delivering his keynote address, Deputy Minister for Department of Economic Management, Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Augustus Flomo, said Liberia as a country has undertaken some steps to fight against money laundering. He averred that the government believes in this initiative to carry on the assessment training.

He unfolded that while it is true that the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) government is working extremely hard in battling money laundering, the government needs to take some practical steps. He emphasized that the Executive branch of government is engaging the Legislature in ensuring that the Anti-Money Laundering Act is enacted.

He moreover called on every well-meaning Liberian to join the fight against money laundering, noting that it is not an individual fight. Minister Flomo assured the FIU of the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning’s continued support.

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