USAID is currently implementing the four-year Liberia Municipal Water Project (LMWP), a unique project opportunity and a foundational investment that not only addresses urban water supply infrastructure needs, but also sets the stage for a community-based and a decentralized approach for water supply management that can foster sustainable operation and maintenance (O&M) for the recommended capital improvements.
The primary objective of LMWP is to support the design, tendering, execution and operation of water supply infrastructure improvements in the three Liberian county capitals – Robertsport (Grand Cape Mount County), Sanniquellie (Nimba County), and Voinjama (Lofa County). The contractor for LMWP, Tetra Tech, is tasked with assisting local and national authorities in developing plans for water supply and sanitation improvements, overseeing construction of this capital improvement project (CIP), supporting initial operations of water supply infrastructure improvements, and establishing local capability to sustainably operate and maintain constructed water supply systems. The CIP is separate and distinct from LMWP, and will be contracted by USAID separately. The primary design criteria for the improved infrastructure is that by the end of LMWP, over 90 percent of the population in each city will have improved water supply access and improved infrastructure will be handed over to a locally-based operator capable of financially and technically sustaining water supply services.
USAID is embarking on a mid-term evaluation to determine whether the assistance it has provided through LMWP is meeting its objectives, and if adjustments are needed as USAID advances plans to begin capital works in line with the plans developed by LMWP for the three cities. Accordingly, the evaluation addressed the following three key areas: (1) Effectiveness of infrastructure planning/construction oversight approach, (2) Effectiveness of institutional framework and capacity building, and (3) Overall project positioning and strategy for phase-out of USAID assistance. The evaluation team consisted of a Team Leader/Utilities Expert, a Utilities Expert, and a Liberian Administrative/Logistics Expert.