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Saturday, July 20, 2024

LISGIS MUST STOP DISGRACING LIBERIA – SAYS BISHOP BROWN

Date:

LIBERIA – “LISGIS must stop disgracing Liberia!” The admonition was given today during the regular Sunday worship service and climaxed of the Seventh Week of a 3-Month prayer Campaign for the family, church, and nation, amongst others, at the New Water in the Desert Assembly Apostolic Pentecostal Church in Brewerville, Montserrado County.

Bishop Kortu K. Brown, the pastor of the church remarked that it was unthinkable that LISGIS was unable to properly organize and direct the implementation of a national population census after years of planning and preparations.

“This country deserves better than LISGIS is exhibiting”, he opined adding that it was deeply unfortunate that Africa’s oldest independent country wasn’t able to organize and execute the counting of its citizens and their houses and other properties after 200 years of existence. The census was previously scheduled to pick up on October 24, 2022. However, due to reports of corruption, poor planning, and lack of proper coordination at the agency of government responsible for the conduct of the exercise, the census hasn’t started in earnest.

Deep divisions within LISGIS leadership

“A house divided against itself cannot stand”, the presiding prelate of the Apostolic Pentecostal Church warned. “How can the top management of LISGIS be in such division in the public glare? Something must be done about it. Last week, the two principal deputies for administration and statistics publicly disagreed on local radio talk shows without rebuke and/or reprehension from the central government. The man on statistics said the country wasn’t ready for the census while the man on administration previously told the nation that all was set for the census. It turned out that the census was NOT properly organized and prepared for”, he said.

November 11 holiday

The Liberian government made a proclamation declaring Friday, November 11, 2022, as National Census Day in Liberia. After weeks of rambling in and out of LISGIS, the public was made to understand that all was set. “However, nothing was set. Census day turned out to be a flop. I didn’t see one enumerator in my community. Nobody from our local church saw an enumerator on that day. It is so sad for the country”, the outspoken cleric said, adding, “we are subjecting our country to general mockery and ridicule amongst the comity of nations”, he averred, adding that we must ensure that the process is properly arranged before making an announcement again about putting people in the communities to take a census.

Payment of Enumerators

Another concern of the former President of the Liberia Council of Churches (LCC) was the regular complaints by enumerators who have been selected by the Liberia Institute for Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) that the authorities are failing to pay them. “The question is what’s happening to the payment of the enumerators”, he quipped, adding, “without enumerators, there will be no census. So why are the authorities not focusing on ensuring that enumerators are ready for the exercises?”

LISGIS Must Buckle Up

Bishop Brown called on LISGIS to “buckle up if the census must be a success. Right now, no one knows anything definite about the census. When is it starting? How long is it running for? When will it end? How organized is the management team? Have the enumerators been paid? How much and how long? Who are the other local partners collaborating with LISGIS on the census? I know four years ago, as President of the LCC I was asked to be on the census board. I went to one meeting and wasn’t called back again”, adding, “national efforts like these require the involvement of all hands, on deck”

AN APPEAL

Bishop Brown concorded with the appeal of the International Community and the Government of Liberia calling on all Liberians to lend their support to the process. “It doesn’t make sense for anyone to call for a boycott of the exercise. Liberia needs the census. It is being poorly readied; However, we can insist that the right thing is done instead of calling for a boycott of the exercise.

“We call on all Liberians to go out there and participate in the census so we can know some important statistics about our country since the last census was done about 14 years ago”. The census is intended to help drive our development goals and engagements. Without it, we could be under planning because of the lack of current and basic information to guide our decisions about our national development goals.”

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Smart News Liberia is an online news outlet and a product of Smart Media Group Inc. Our website, smartnewsliberia.com, covers a broad spectrum of news content. For inquiries or information, you can reach us at 0777425285 or 0886946925, or email us at smartnewsliberia@gmail.com or info@smartnewsliberia.com.

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