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Agriculture Minister blames importation for high US rate

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Agriculture Minister Dr. Mogana Flomo, Jr. has attributed the continued skyrocketing value of the United States Dollars against the depreciating Liberia Dollars to the importation of rice and other food items into the country.

“Those who are thinking that President George Weah will just go on the radio and say let the rate be reduced and it just happens are making mistakes,” he said on 27 April during the official launching ceremony of the National Cassava Producers Union of Liberia in Melekie Town, Bong County.

According to Dr. Flomo, the US rate continues to rise because Liberia is importing everything, adding that pepper and groundnuts are all being imported from neighboring countries.

He explains that marketers carry US dollars to Guinea to buy goods, adding that in the process they have to buy the US dollars at a higher rate.

Minister Flomo urges every citizen to go back to the soil as the only way of helping to stop importing pepper, okra, and groundnuts.

According to Dr. Flomo, every year the Government of Liberia spends over US$200m just on import of the nation’s staple food, rice.

He warns that if the citizens cannot go back to the soil and begin to produce enough food and stop importing rice, pepper and groundnuts from other countries, the rate will continue to go higher.

Dr. Flomo further says it is a shame for Liberia to always be asking other countries for help, pondering as to when Liberia too will begin to give help to other countries.

“We can only do that when we value and develop ourselves to the level where we can give out hands to other countries,” he notes.By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong–Edited by Winston W. Parley

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