Enhancing citizens’ understanding of participation in democracy remains a formidable challenge in Liberia. Over the past several years in Liberia, the majority of the citizens participate in governance only by voting during electioneering period and when population censuses are conducted. To this, many of them become fatigued about engaging their leaders on how decisions are made at the national level that would have triggered a down effect on them. The low-level of citizens’ participation can be tied to inadequate access to information on how the public sector works in their interest. Meanwhile, the low-level of citizens’ participation limits their understanding in making sound decisions during elections.
Amid these numerous issues that affect citizens, BudgIT –Liberia is one of the leading civil society organizations that is anchoring some strides to enhance citizens’ understanding in the governance sector of the country. Since September of 2020, the institution has been able to conduct a little over 50 live talk shows on its flagship program called Budget Hour with 30 Guests on OK Fm 99.5 on Lynch Street in Monrovia as a means of educating citizens thus increasing their level of understanding to get involved in the governance process within the country. Also, our institution has conducted training for over forty-five CSOs and CBOs in four counties (Bong, Margibi, Grand Bassa and Montserrado) as a way of enhancing their capacity in the transparency and accountability landscape of Liberia.
Nevertheless, the need for active and inclusive involvement of citizens in the governance process cannot be overemphasized. Meanwhile, empowering Civil Society Institutions through capacity building to lead this engagement with citizens is vital for a sustainable development action plan.