The WASH Reporters & Editors Network of Liberia has officially launched the Samuel H. Pieh WASH Media Interactive Lecture series at a well attended program held at the offices of the WASH media Group in Central Monrovia.
The launch of the WASH Lecture series in honor of the outgoing Liberia WASH Consortium Coordinator, comes barely a week, after Mr. Pieh was honored and certificated by the WASH Media Network for his numerous and tremendous contributions to the WASH sector of the country.
Speaking at the Program making the launch of the lecture series, the Chairman of the WASH Reporters & Editors Network of Liberia, Augustine N. Myers described the launch of the lecture series as historical and a significant mile stone in the history of water, sanitation and hygiene in Liberia, Africa and the World.
Mr. Myers said the launch of the lecture series marked the birth of series of activities that are intended to ensure a more robust media attention on the WASH sector of the country.
The Chairman of the WASH Media Group said, the Organization feels pride to launch such a program in honor of the outgoing Liberia WASH Consortium Coordinator for the passion the WASH Champion has shown in the drive of making safe drinking water, improved sanitation and hygiene facilities are accessible to all in Liberian regardless of age, gender or title.
Mr. Myers further said the honoring of Mr. Pieh is also based on his enterprising and motivational role played in the sector and for encouraging the media to create the passion for the WASH sector of Liberia.
He disclosed that the lecture series will bring together actors in the WASH sector on a monthly basis to show case issues in the sector ranging from programs, challenges, successes and a way forward for the sector.
Chairman Myers further said the lecture series will provide an opportunity for stake holders to share their experiences in the sector of the country and provide expert opinions as it relates to the improvement of the sector.
Launching the Samuel H. Pieh WASH Interactive Lecture Series, Deputy Public Works Minister for Rural Development, Christian Herbert, commended the WASH Champion for his contributions made to the WASH sector of Liberia over the years.
Deputy Minister Herbert said, the Ministry of Public Works and the Liberian government are very pride of the outgoing Liberia WASH Consortium Coordinator for his foot prints left on the soil of Liberia in the WASH sector.
He disclosed that in time passed in Liberia, many people ignored the issues of WASH with the perception that Liberia has abundance of water and there was no need of giving priority to WASH issues.
The Deputy Public Works Ministry Boss said with such attention that is being created and the level of advocacy ongoing concerning WASH issues, the signals are very clear that WASH is taking its rightful place in the country.
Deputy Minister Herbert used the occasion to encourage the WASH Media Group to continue their good work in bringing out issues that are relevant to the sector with the aim of buttressing efforts of government, stake holders, policy makers, development partners and the civil society.
Making remarks at the program, the President of the Press union of Liberia, Peter Quaqua, praised the WASH Reporters & Editors Network of Liberia for taking interest in devoting exclusive media attention on the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene sector of the country.
Mr. Quaqua described as admirable, the involvement of a group of professional journalists to specialize in reporting on WASH issues and at the same time give expert opinions on critical issues affecting the sector.
The PUL Boss reminded other journalists to also attach importance to WASH issues in the country, stressing that the lecture series will bring to the spot light issues that are affecting the citizens of in the sector.
In separate remarks, the Field Operations Manager of the Corporative Housing Foundation(CHF- International), Leroy Johnson and the Head of the Liberia NGOS Network and member of the Liberia CSOs WASH Network, John Jukon praised the WASH Media Group for embarking on such important venture.
Messrs Johnson and Jukon also used the occasion to thank Mr. Samuel Pieh for the legacy he has left on the soil of Liberia.
They called on the WASH Media Group to make the Lecture Series more interactive, by providing opportunity for the less privileged, especially people who are experiencing most difficult WASH issues to share their experiences.
For his part, the Outgoing Liberia WASH Consortium Coordinator, “WASH Champion” Samuel Pieh, historicizing the Donor conference held two years ago in Liberia, revealed that a speech delivered by Liberia’s public Works Minister Koffi Woods, served as a zest in pushing the issues of WASH at top of the agenda.
According Mr. Pieh, formation of the WASH Media Network was not a mistake, cause it has served its purpose by spreading the knowledge and education necessary for Liberians about WASH.
Mr. Pieh said the media group has played a leading role in ensuring that Liberians and foreign residents are educated about issues surrounding the WASH sector of the country.
The WASH Champion disclosed that the WASH Reporters & Editors Network of Liberia has made a tremendous contribution to the issue of behavior change amongst Liberians about water, sanitation and hygiene.
Mr. Pieh said access to safe drinking water, improved sanitation and hygiene is the basic ingredient to the development of any nation.
The WASH Champion said, the construction of hospitals, universities and factories is insignificant if the issues of safe water, sanitation and hygiene are not given priority.
He assured the media group and the WASH sector of his commitment to highlight plight of the sector with the intent of galvanizing support while out of Liberia.