Special Awards In Pictures

-Bong County District Development Council Claims

The District Development Council (DDC) in Jorquelleh district#1 alleged that it has been rejected from development activities in the county and district.

The DDC was established in 2003 with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in collaboration with the Ministry of Internal Affairs with responsiblities to monitor all development projects in their respective districts across the country.
But, speaking to a team of journalists under the USAID/Liberia Accountability and Voice Initiative (LAVI) and Liberia Media Center (LMC) under the Natural Resource management (NRM) and the county social development fund (CSDF) project, the chairman of the DDC in Jorquelleh district#1 alleged that the council has since been excluded and has been not given attention during the county council sitting.
Chairman Moses P. Kollie alleged that as a result of rejection, the DDC has become very dormant in the area.
“We became dormant because we were not involved in development activities and we don't know how much have been used for development activities. We are not aware of development projects in the district. We are constrained as people working on development activities in the districts,” he lamented.
Kollie recounted that the DDC used to participate in the county council sitting, but were later left out on grounds that they were setup by the UNDP and their functions were over.
According to him, the absence of the DDC is a serious problem to development activities. “We only see them carrying on development activities in the district. We need to know every funding to the district for the citizens for development because we need to take ownership of the development projects,” he added.
For his part, the Commissioner of Jorquelleh#1, David Karchue said the works of the DDC very significant in the development drive of the district and county at large.
Commissioner Karchue recalled that during the partnership with the UNDP, the DDC officials were given the logistics needed for their operations.
Meanwhile, officials of the DDC are calling on the Liberian Government and partners to see reason in rejuvenating the works of the DDC.
“We must be part of the county council sitting because we are aware of what affecting our people. We will constantly visit project sites. Sponsor a meeting to give feedback to the citizens of the districts. The DDC should be notified on projects in various districts to keep track of what the development in the district look like. We should be recognized by our officials in the county. The DDC roles should be clearly explained to the officials,” they recommended.
Also speaking, the County Coordinator of National Youth Movement for Transparent Elections (NAYMOTE) in Bong County, working with the group and others in the county on the management of CSDF, said after their survey, they realized that citizens are not fully participating in the management of the County Social Development Fund (CSDF).
Moses Bailey said as a result, there are some abandoned projects in various communities because they don’t involve the participation of the local people.
He said the involvement of the DDC and the locals means a lot for the development drive in the county and the management of the CSDF.
At the same time, the Assistant Superintendent for Development in Bong County, Anthony B. Sheriff confirmed the exclusion of the DDC from the county council sitting and other development projects in the county, but stressed the need for the reactivation of the District Development Council; saying it helps transmit clear message of development needs of the people.
Superintendent Sheriff said the involvement of the DDC in development projects at the district level can show ownership of development projects by the locals.
Meanwhile, when contacted, the chairperson of the Bong County Legislative Caucus, Representative George Sylvester Mulbah couldn’t respond despite sending him texts as well.

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