Liberia has less than 13 months to assume full responsibility for its own security, as the UN peacekeeping mission draws down. With many Liberians uneasy at the prospect of an eventual withdrawal of the mission, the government needs to establish clear priorities now to be prepared.
I strongly encourage Liberia to hold a nationwide discussion about the devastating effects of rape. Ultimately, the shocking rape numbers will not be reduced without major community mobilization across the country.
The BBC recently quoted Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as saying while she is "very optimistic that Ebola can be beaten" that "there is a danger of the disease coming back." She said Liberia needs "a health system that can work."
Liberia has increasingly been stuck in the kind of siege mentality that residents thought they'd left behind with the end of the civil war in 2002. In short, Liberia's Ebola crisis has become as much a governance crisis as a health crisis.
Despite their increasing presence on the global stage, the relative effectiveness of women national leaders in growing the world's toughest economies compared to their male counterparts was largely unknown -- until now.
We know -- as generations before have professed -- that we cannot achieve sustainable development, that we cannot build healthy and empowered communities and nations when we continue to deny half the world's population their basic human rights and fundamental freedom.
On International Women's Day, my daughter asked me why the world was run by men. I had the answer to my daughter's question in my hands -- anchored in the notion that women empower women in so many modern ways.
As the world marks International Women's Day with pledges to end violence against women and girls, I reflect on the life of 13 year-old Olivia, who was repeatedly raped by an uncle when she was just seven years old.
Women are at the center of our world's development. Women are the mothers who bear and care for children, and they play an important economic role. Empowering women is key to boosting the well-being of many rural societies.