The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has donated 100 wind –up solar energy radios to the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC).
A release said the donation is geared toward strengthening the partnership with the Carter Center and Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) to advocate for transparency and accountability in the use of Ebola Virus Disease resources in Liberia.
UNDP Deputy Country Director for Program Cleophas Torori said the gathering was not merely about the donation of the radios, but signifies the unique partnership that has existed between the UNDP and the LACC over the years and its recent partnership with the Carter Center's on-going Ebola resource monitoring project in Liberia.
The release quotes Mr. Torori as saying that UNDP sees the partnership with the Carter Center as a unique opportunity to impact rural communities.
He said the support will provide the opportunity for underserved community dwellers to access information about how resources being contributed to the fight against the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD) are being used.
The UNDP Deputy Country Director said the initiative will also help to increase the people's understanding about funds that are being provided by local and international partners to EVD fight.
He said the exercise targets underserved communities in at least four counties where the Carter Center has structures and networks in Liberia, including Montserrado, Bong, Lofa and Nimba.
Torori disclosed that about 1200 units of the solar energy radios are already in Liberia with additional quantities expected soon for distribution.
The items were handed over to the LACC and later turned over to the Carter Center for distribution to the targeted counties.
Receiving the radios, LACC Executive Director, Daniel Tipayson expressed appreciation to UNDP for its continuous support to the Commission over the years.
“This donation is not strange to us here at the LACC, because UNDP remains LACC's traditional partner…” Mr. Tipayson stated.
He said due to the Ebola outbreak in the country, the LACC is avoiding the usual celebrations of the International Anti corruption day which involves mass gathering of people to commemorate the day through different programs and activities.
For his part, the Project Lead of the Liberia Access to Information Project at the Carter Center Cllr. Negbalee Warner said access to information is a fundamental human right that has been established by local and international laws to be enjoyed by everyone without hindrance.
Cllr. Warner said access to information is also essential to promoting good governance and fighting corruption worldwide.
He said Carter Center, under the Liberia Access to Information Project is working to ensure that people have access to information across Liberia.
Cllr. Warner further said Carter Center is also working with community dwellers and civil society organizations to demand information from the government.
The Liberia Access to Information Project Lead said at a recent meeting with civil society organizations, concerns were raised about resources that are being committed to the EVD fight in Liberia.
Cllr. Warner said the radios will be distributed to less privileged communities in the four counties.
Also speaking, LACC Program Manager Jeanet Sonpon-Sarsih said the turning over of the radios is in commemoration of this year's Anti-Corruption day which is being celebrated under the theme: 'Break the Corruption Chain”.
The radios were procured by the UNDP in partnership with Lifeline Energy, an NGO based in South Africa that primarily focuses on providing education and information access to women, orphans and vulnerable children and refugees.