We often use our voices to tell our elected officials to support anti-global poverty legislation that is months or even years in the making. But today is different. Today we can take action on a critical international situation ripped from the headlines.
As the Financial Times reports:
The International Monetary Fund faced harsh criticism on Thursday for failing to meet its commitment to write off $800m in debt owed by Liberia, as Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the country’s leader, met US president George W. Bush in Washington.
And from the BBC:
Forgiveness of the old debt would allow the IMF to issue new development loans.
Correspondents say it is widely agreed that Liberia’s arrears should be paid off, but there is still some wrangling about the financial details.
This broken promise of debt relief threatens the future of Liberia, a country struggling to make democracy work after a bloody civil war, and lift its people out of poverty.
Today, Liberia is on the right path. In 2006, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf became the first African woman to be elected a head of state. She is an expert on development—she worked for the World Bank and UN Development Program—and on Liberia’s recent troubled history, having been jailed twice and driven into exile for opposing a repressive government.
It is an outrage that 18 months have passed since the IMF committed to writing off Liberia’s debt. Send a message to the IMF and let them know that as a citizen of the fund’s largest donor country—you know that the time for action is now.
-Josh Peck, ONE.org