-Weah gov’t is corrupt
The Alternative National Congress (ANC), has backed claims by its standard-bearer, Mr. Alexander Cummings, that the George Weah administration is rift with corruption. Last week, while delivering a speech, Cummings, a former Coca-Cola executive, voiced his support for establishing a war and economic crimes court for Liberia to ensure justice, accountability, and end impunity here. In that same speech, he accused the Weah administration of enriching itself while a majority of Liberians live in abject poverty.
But in a rebuttal issued Wednesday, May 26, the government through the Ministry of Information Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT) denied the accusations, saying Cummings claims of corruption against the Weah Administration, and allegations of state-sponsored crimes were unsubstantiated.
However, the ANC in a statement issued Sunday, May 30, 2021, said, the claims made by their political leader were back up with a report from Transparency International, which listed Liberia amongst the five most corrupt countries in Africa. The report also listed Liberia amongst the 10 poorest countries.
The party noted that although the sitting President, George M. Weah won the 2017 elections on the promise to fight corruption, stealing in his administration continues to undermine the country’s development and limits the Government of Liberia’s ability to lift Liberians out of poverty.
“We at the ANC stand by the view expressed by our Political Leader that corruption is not only continuing but worsening in Liberia because those who should be checking the stealing are the actual thieves.
The so-called response from MICAT merely tried unsuccessfully to justify and defend the culture of corruption that has overtaken this government and has kept our country mismanaged, and our people, poor,” the statement said.
The ANC reaffirms that unless there are good examples from the very top of the political leadership of the country as well as serious commitments to upholding an accountable system of administering public affairs coupled with the needed political will to investigate, prosecute and punish friends and foes alike for corruption, it will continue to be impossible to fight corruption and the ongoing looting in the public sector.
The party added “the painful reality is that corruption is keeping most of our people poor and enriching a small minority of government officials. In the words of our leader, Alexander B. Cummings, “In Liberia today, a few are getting rich illegally while the majority of our people are getting poorer. This is unacceptable.””
Excerpts of the statement: “From the falsehood that MICAT put out, it is clear that the Government of Liberia is delusional about the state of affairs, is disconnected from the people who are feeling the result of their corrupt leadership, and that MICAT is irresponsibly trafficking in dishonesty at the expense of the Liberian taxpayers.
Although the GoL claimed in its characteristically deceptive response to Mr. Cummings, that the ANC leader was peddling “street talk,” the KROLL Report backed by the US Government and key donor agencies showed gaps and flaws in the accountability processes around the printing of new Liberian banknotes.
Also, it can be recalled that President Weah has brushed to the side, the recommendations of the Independent Presidential Investigation Team (PIT) and the public plea of the General Auditing Commission (GAC) for an audit of the USD25Million Mop-up Exercise, especially after an imposed “fact-finding” by the GAC discovered flaws and discrepancies. The failure to commission the audit as recommended and requested presents the Weah Administration as desperate to hide its dirty deals and has left the banking system without public and business confidence which it needs to work credibly.
If the President and his administration have nothing to hide and are serious to fight corruption as President Weah promised the Liberian people that he would, the ANC is pleased to challenge the Government to forensically audit the Liberian people USD25Million botched Mop-up Exercise. Even as MICAT pretends not to know, the Liberian people know that there is only one reason the Weah-led administration cannot commission said audit – it is corruptly complicit!
The Weah-led administration can collude to steal all it wants, and try to cover it up by refusing to audit. However, a Cummings-led administration will scrupulously audit, prosecute and punish anyone involved in stealing from the Liberian people. And for this, there will be no sacred cows.
Whether the Weah-led administration likes it or not, the Political Leader of the ANC, Mr. Alexander B. Cummings will continue to condemn the stealing in Government because it is keeping our people poor. We do not and will not try to convince the MICAT of the existence of the obvious, which has been aptly described as a “Den of Thieves”.
We believe that the officials working at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT), are doing what they are paid not to do – tell lies to the people. But as is famously said, you can fool some people some time, but you cannot fool all the people, all the time.”