On Sunday, May 21, U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Stephanie Williams and the USAID Acting Assistant Administrator for the Middle East Maria Longi attended the final workshop of the joint U.S.-Iraqi Taqadum program. The $106 million initiative, funded by the American people through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), helps local Iraqi authorities improve public services through implementing the amended Law 21, which gives provincial and local authorities greater authority to meet the specific needs of people in their districts.
President of the Iraq National Alliance Sayed Ammar Al-Hakeem, Minister of State for Provincial Affairs Torhan Al-Mufti, and Chargé d’Affaires Williams gave opening remarks at the workshop. In her remarks, Chargé d’Affaires Williams said, “Good governance and economic growth are inextricably tied and mutually reinforcing. They are the key to Iraq’s stability, the well-being of its people, and to its prosperity.”
USAID’s Governance Strengthening Project works with the central, provincial, and local governments to develop their capacity to deliver essential services to the Iraqi people. A follow on project to the Taqadam program will continue to provide an important forum for officials from across the country, together with international experts, to develop decentralization strategies that support a sovereign, prosperous, unified, and democratic Iraq that meets the aspirations of all Iraqis.