Vice President Boakai Lauds Plan International

Wednesday, 4th November 2009
Monrovia, Liberia - Liberiaís Vice President Joseph N. Boakai has lauded the international NGO Plan International for its impact in the reconstruction of post-war Liberia.

He observed that without the support of organizations like Plan International, the Liberian Governmentís free primary and compulsory education program would have turned out to be a mere dream.

He explained that the free primary education program has resulted in an estimated 70 percent increase in primary school enrollment, and the subsequent demand for additional schools, furniture and trained teachers, noting that the post-war Government lacks the capacity to single-handedly fund such a cost-intensive program.

Vice President Boakai made the commendation on November 4, when a Plan International delegation comprising officials of Plan Liberia and Plan Norway, as well as a donor of Plan International, Mr. Torunn Kvernstuen, Chairman of the Norway based Torunn & Oleís Foundation, paid a courtesy call on him at his Capitol Building Office.
The Vice President observed that the situation in Liberia has improved tremendously since the current Government assumed leadership of the country, noting that anyone visiting Liberia about three years ago would have been greeted with a system completely wrecked by the war. ďEverything was down. As a result of the protracted war, education and health suffered, while roads were hardly reconditioned. All rural teachers were hardly paid and were not trained or motivated,Ē Vice President Boakai noted.   

In remarks, the acting Country Director of Plan Liberia, Christian Gangbo, disclosed that the organization plans to construct 25 schools across Liberia in addition to constructing latrines and hand-pumps, training teachers and providing furniture and textbooks.

Also in remarks, Mr. Kvernsteun, whose organization Torunn & Oleís Foundation, is funding Plan Internationalís programs in Liberia, said he was impressed with operations of Plan International in Liberia and was proud to support its programs because the funding was reaching those for whom it is intended.

Also in remarks, Mr. Kjell Erik Oie of Plan Norway observed that post-conflict Liberia has a lot of challenges which need to be addressed with international support.