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Parliamentary Oversight of the Security Sector in Liberia



Just like all other parliaments in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Liberian Legislature plays an essential role in promoting good security sector governance (SSG). Although it has adopted several policies to strengthen accountability in the country, it still faces significant challenges. Notably, there are no handover mechanisms between outgoing and incoming legislators; interactions are largely ad hoc, take place primarily on an individual basis, and have limited influence on the deliberations of the committees. As a result, there is a loss of institutional knowledge and initiatives to review national legislation on security or to monitor security and justice institutions are not part of an overall, long-term strategy.

In a bid to engage previous and current legislators in an unprecedented lesson-sharing process, DCAF conducted a series of interviews of former legislators who provided essential tips on SSG to their newly elected peers. In close collaboration with Media Hub Liberia, DCAF gathered these unique testimonies over five weeks. DCAF will use this film as a jumping off point for former and newly-elected committee members to identify joint recommendations on SSG. These recommendations will eventually be published and translated into an internal policy document.

Since 2018, DCAF has been supporting security sector governance in Liberia through a project funded by UNDP, with an overarching goal to build the capacity of the security-related committees of the 54th Legislature to perform their core functions of oversight, law-making and representation.