Wednesday, August 27, 2008

All Star Line Up!

Bring these women together and what do you think they would discuss?

Well...its definitely not who did their hair and what outfit they are wearing (although President Sirleaf does always look quite fabulous)!

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
President of Liberia

Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul
German Development Minister

Henrietta Holsman Fore

Administrator, U.S. Agency for International
Development and Director of United States
Foreign Assistance

Antoinette Sayeh
Finance Minister of Liberia

Ellen Margrethe Loj
Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General

This was the all star line up at the 2008 Liberia Poverty Reduction Forum at which I had the great honour of accompanying the Liberian Delegation. There was an impressive representation by women leaders working in development, each of whom presented an inspirational message which acknowledged the great strides made by the Government of Liberia and a strong belief in the progress which is yet to be acheived.

During the Forum, I did not have much time to fully absorb the position I found myself in. Amongst other responsibilities I worked on negotiating and drafting the communique and press release on behalf of the Government of Liberia. I worked closely with the German Government, who were kindly hosting the event, the World Bank and the UN. The work during the conference was incredibly pressurised but also very rewarding. A significant outcome of the Forum was the pledging of $250-300 million to Liberia. It also provided the opportunity for an open and frank discussion about the implementation challenges ahead as Liberia presses forward on its reform process.

Upon my return to Liberia, and now London, I have found it difficult to fully encapsulate my experience. The build up and the opportunity to participation in the Forum in Berlin was a definite highlight. Working closely with Finance Minister Sayeh provided me with a wealth of insight into the challenges she faces. My experience was defintley heightened by the open environment in which I was able to work. I also learnt an immense amount from her approach to working with others and building effective coalitions. Above all, I very much appreciated the opportunity to contribute to the work of Minister Sayeh.


Praveen said...

Hi Preya..
it was nice reading your blogs..
thankyou..they gave me some overview of liberia..
I am about to join Arcelor Mittal at Liberia and concerned about Liberia
I would be pleased if you can help me about living in liberia
my mail id is
please do reply..

The Homo Economicus said...

What a great blog!
This is very useful for all of us who are planning to go to Liberia this summer!!!
Great idea!

Dany B

Michelle said...
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