The United Nations has informed the Government of Liberia that it remains committed to improving the efficiency and effectiveness of development cooperation subsisting between the world body and Liberia, requesting, however, that accountability remains a hallmark in this endeavor.
The UN said this will be channelled through combined efforts with the Government of Liberia that will lead further to the achievement of the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD).
The body said it is honored by the government’s recognition of the UN system in Liberia as a central provider of high-quality technical support, policy advice and development assistance in a wide variety of thematic areas.
A communication dated April 25, 2019 from UN Resident Coordinator Yacoub El Hillo to the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel F. McGill, the UN, however, noted that amidst joint efforts to address Liberia’s development challenges, the organization strictly adheres to its fiduciary responsibility towards donors and member states.
The body cited through its Resident Coordinator that explicit guidelines and high operational standards to safeguard UN funds against misuse and integrity risk are unyielding principles underpinning the operations and works of the UN.
“To strengthen national ownership and accountability for development result, the UN Agencies, Funds and Programs are gradually moving from Direct Implementation Modality (DIM) to National Implementation Modality (NIM) under the Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfer (HACT) framework,” the UN noted.
Relative to this, it indicated that under this framework, cash is transferred to national implementing partners to carry out development activities agreed in annual work plan.
It informed the government that for implementing partners to receive cash advance, they must be macro assessed to ensure that they have good financial management capacity as well as a system for recording accounting transactions and appropriate filing of financial documents.
The body said it expects that under the NIM that implementing partners assume full responsibility for the effective use of the resources advanced to them and for reporting fairly and accurately on project progress and among other things
The UN, However, notes that several agencies in recent months have expressed challenges in getting timely and accurate reports from their government counterparts, thereby delaying implementation of important services and advisory support to the people of Liberia.
The body warned, “That in the medium to long-term, this may lead to withholding of funding by our partners for UN programs in Liberia with all the attending negative consequences.”