WASHINGTON – The Mayor of the City of Monrovia, Jefferson T. Koijee, is attending the 5th Annual Global Development Forum in Washington D.C. where he has seized the opportunity to lure partners and potential investors to come and help Liberia’s capital overcome its daunting challenges.
The Mayor highlighted ongoing projects in Monrovia that are geared towards bringing the city on par with other national capitals in the region. But the challenges are not easy to surmount without the collective efforts of partners, he said.
He, however, emphasized that he is determined to make a difference in ensuring that Monrovia truly represents an urban city that hosts 1.5 million of the country’s 4 million population.
“It’s indeed a great honor to form part of this year’s panel and I am grateful to be among change makers around the world, to share with you my own experience of our stewardship at the City Government of Monrovia,” Mayor Koijee said.
Mayor Koijee disclosed that Monrovia is already undergoing rapid change demographically and at the same time being modernizing.
Speaking of the challenges the city is faced with, Mayor Koijee informed his colleagues and other guests at the forum of complexity of Monrovia’s challenges, which he noted stem from the years of civil crisis which left all social, financial and logistical infrastructure in the city in ruins.
“We have launched a clean city project dubbed ‘Weah for Clean City’, a project that focuses on youth empowerment, health and sanitation through a participatory leadership approach with our citizens and communities taking full ownership of cleaning the city with a sole purpose of making Monrovia a resilient city in improving the quality of lives of our residents through solid waste management, education, public safety and volunteerism.
He said Monrovia welcomes international organizations through private sector engagements to invest in the solid waste sector of the city and help to bring value to the huge stock of waste generated day-by-day in the City.
Mayor Koijee said, the city government of Monrovia has been partnering with national stakeholders, most especially in addressing the city’s most daunting challenge – waste management. He noted that Monrovia would need all hands on deck if it should be a clean and tidy city.
“We have been working with the World Bank with funding from the EU to address our solid waste sector under the Chessmanburg Land and Urban Sanitation Project (CLUS) through a grant agreement of 17.5 million USD with the government providing a counterpart funding of 1.5 million USD,” he said.
Mayor Koijee shared the platform with Tony Blair, Executive Chairman of the Tony Blair Institute and former U.K. Prime Minister, Somik Lall, Global Lead on Territorial Development Solutions and Lead Economist for Urban Development in Africa, World Bank, Emilio Ciarlo Head of Institutional Relations, Communications, Opportunities and Economic Development for AICS ,Dana Omran, Managing Director, City Resilience Delivery-Africa, 100 Resilient Cities-Rockefeller Foundation, among others.
Mayor Koijee said despite limited resources available, he is determined as Mayor of Liberia’s capital, he will continue to work assiduously to Monrovia reaches its full potential.
He said the city government under his stewardship has instituted a massive reform in revenue generation by exploring other innovative sources of revenue generation.
According to him, the city government is soliciting funding to invest in agricultural activities like urban farming, city transportation services and city health services.
“As we speak there is a pilot project being launched under our “Weah for Clean City project intended for a systemic door- to-door waste collection and a means of adding value to our waste in where our locals can start to pay for their waste and eventually can open door for private sector engagement in our solid waste sector.”
Annual Global Development Forum was organized by the “Center for Strategic and International Studies”. It is a forum that explores how the United States can work with its allies, the private sector, civil societies ,and multilateral institutions to tackle complex global challenges.