The first corps of elected officers of the Female Workers Association of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (FEWLEC) was on Friday, July 19, 2019, inducted into office at a ceremony held at the Bushrod Office of the LEC.
Those inducted into office are: Youngor Lamblah, President; Zanweah Bantu, 1st Vice President; Elizabeth T. Falkornia, 2nd Vice President; Comfort Zingbey, Secretary-General; and Harriet Clayer-Carr, Financial Secretary. Others include, Mary Bohlen, Chaplan; Beatrice Gbengon, Coordinator (Bushrod) and Anita Zolia, Coordinator (Mont Coffee).
Speaking during the induction ceremony, the Chief Executive Officer of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC), Pascal Buckley congratulated the newly elected FEWLEC leadership and pledged the management’s commitment to supporting the Association through the Gender & Social Inclusion Department.
The LEC, he said, has joined the group of progressive utilities worldwide that have embraced the overall idea of gender inclusion, which according to him, is the first step in achieving a more inclusive workforce.
“This is a moment today for LEC, a new beginning, a new chapter in LEC’s history. LEC has joined the group of progressive utilities worldwide that have embraced the overall idea of gender inclusion, a first step in achieving a more requisite workforce”, Mr. Buckley said.
Mr. Buckley’s stressed the need for the LEC Workforce to be based on competence, skills and ability and not on gender or social backgrounds.
ECOWAS Commission Ambassador to Liberia, Ambassador Babatunde Olanrewaju Ajisomo said his office will continually engage relevant state actors and public corporations and institutions to ensure that women rights and welfare are prioritized and protected.
Ambassador Ajisomo noted that the Female Workers Leadership at the LEC have demonstrated sincere commitment to improving service delivery thereby aiding their male counterparts in boosting the country’s energy sector.
He urged the LEC Management to ensure that more qualify women excel to senior managerial positions within LEC to further improve the overall performance of the Corporation.
The ECOWAS Ambassador described LEC women as result-oriented and praised them for contributing immensely to the success of the institution.
President-elect, Madam Youngar Lablah said it is a great idea to prioritize the issues of women and elevate them to the level of policy and decision making in any entity. She thanked the Management for prioritizing the establishment of a dedicated department called the Gender and Social Inclusion Department.
According to Madam Lablah, global statistics show that institutions with higher percentage of women in leadership positions tend to have higher level of performance and increase in productivity. She said her team will work with the LEC Management through the Gender and Social Inclusion Department to ensure that the Corporation’s 40:60 gender balance is achieve as stated in its Gender and Social Inclusion Policy by encouraging more women to enroll in technical studies.
“We want to see more qualify women excelling to senior management positions within the LEC to further improve the overall performance of the Corporation,” she said.
The LEC Female Workers Association went to the pools on Friday, July 21, and elected officials that will spear head the associated for two years. 82% out of 143 female employees’ turnout and voted during the electoral process. The LEC currently has over 900 employees, and females make a total of 143, constituting 15.8% of the total workforce.
The FEWLEC was established through the LEC Gender and Social Inclusion Department, a component of the Compact signed between the Government of Liberia and the United States Government to reduce poverty in Liberia through economic growth.
The lack of access to reliable and affordable electricity was identified as one of the two constraints to be addressed by the Compact. An important part of the terms of the Compact obliges LEC to establish and support a dedicated Gender and Social inclusion Department (GSID) with the Utility.
This led to the LEC Management establishing the Gender and Social Inclusion Department in July 2018.