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Today is a great day for the new government and the people of Liberia. For the first time in 15 years, parts of Monrovia have running water and functioning electricity. This may not seem like a lot, but it is HUGE for people that have seen nothing but war, destruction, and theft for so many years. I have recently returned from Liberia, my fifth trip since the election of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and while the new government is facing huge odds, they are making steady, significant progress. Budget revenues are up, misappropriation of funds is down, roads are being repaired, stores are reopening, and people are repairing and repainting their houses. The challenges are huge and the odds are long, but this government is making some initial small steps forward, and you know what they say about a lot of small steps…Liberia turns on water and electricity

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CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.