He named the decentralization of power, size and reduction in the cost of central government, the involvement of locals in decision-making and ensuring that the country has foot soldiers who are transparent and accountable to the country and its people.
Addressing the 2017 First Cycle graduation of the Liberia Institute of Public Administration (LIPA) where he served as proxy for Vice President Joseph Boakai, Dr. Tarpeh said while government and development partners have done well with the decentralization program, much more grounds still need to be covered.
Reflecting on one of his recent experiences with government employees working in the rural parts of the Liberia, Dr. Tarpeh challenged the government to not only send professionals in the counties in the name of decentralization, but also facilitate their work and pay them the requisite salaries that will respond to their needs and those of their families.
According to him, decentralization is never possible without the participation of locals, namely chiefs, elders and youths.
In his speech, he urged them to serve as agents of change while turning on the lights to national development.
“As persons trained in the public administration domain, you are the light and you must go and shine forth the light you have caught here”.
In admonishing the 556 graduates from all disciplines on Friday in the Auditorium of the University of Liberia, Dr. Tarpeh said that the way to curb the darkness is to turn on the light, and commissioned them to go forth and serve the nation with diligence, impeccability and ensure that whatever they do is done honorably.
He termed the knowledge they have acquired as one that places them in a strategic position and urged them to go beyond self and contribute to nation building.
“As you go into the world, it is time that after your academic training, you show that you have been prepared to solve national and organizational problems that are confronting those institutions. You have been trained to serve the public and not yourself”, he warned.
In remarks, LIPA Director General Oblayon Nyemah called on the graduates to endeavor to change lives for a better Liberia.
“Today, our country is immersed in a transformational process aimed at translating the horrible experience of a broken state, confronted with the throes and vestiges of conflict, into one that despite its historical experiences, can rise to the epicenter of a renewed and successful post-conflict administration as demonstrated over the last decade”, he noted.
According to the LIPA Director General, Liberia has potentials that promise to transcend decades of stagnation and stampede into the future with hope vowing to ensure quality in training.
Established in 1969, LIPA is Liberia’s premier center of excellence in capacity building for sustainable development with the mission to provide capacity building support for sustained quality service delivery through training research and consultancy.
The core values of the institute include professional and quality service, integrity, gender equality, partnership building transparency and accountability teamwork.