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CENTAL blames Weah for poor corruption fight 

By Lewis S Teh

Liberia’s fall in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) 2022 report released by Transparency International has been described as one of the worst decliners in the fight against corruption across the world.

The Executive Director of the Center for Transparency and Accountability in Liberia (CENTAL) Anderson Miamen, says President Weah’s alleged failure to lead by example in the fight against corruption is reason behind Liberia’s decline in the CPI’s ranking.

Addressing a news conference on Tuesday, January 31st while releasing the CPI 2022 report, Mr. Maimen revealed that from 29 in 2021, Liberia has dropped by 3 points to 26 in 2022, noting “This further cements the country’s position as one of the biggest decliners on the CPI, dropping by a massive 15 points from 41 in 2012 to 26 in 2022.”

 He says the country now ranks 142/180 and remains further down the table, joining the list of countries significantly declining on the CPI.

He observes that worldwide, with the exception of Saint Lucia that has dropped sixteen (16) points, only Liberia has fallen fifteen (15) points since 2012, and also, in West Africa and the Mano River Union, Liberia is the only country that has declined by 6 points over the last five years. 

Miamen explains that since the country attained her highest score of 41 in 2012, it has been in free-fall on the CPI, topping the list of countries with stagnated and declining anti-corruption efforts, much to the disappointment of many. 

This is corroborated by CENTAL 2022 State of Corruption Report (SCORE 2022), which reveals that 90% of Liberians think Corruption level is high in the country, with confidence in the executive branch of government to fight corruption declining from 30% in 2021 to 26% in 2022, the CENTAL boss adds.

Mr, Miamen continues that CENTAL is extremely concerned about Liberia’s continuous poor performance, especially her place among the Worst Decliners globally. 

In part, he says this speaks to the Liberian government’s inability to address the entrenched culture of impunity by adequately funding public integrity institutions, fully enforcing existing anti-corruption laws and policies, and taking drastic actions against his officials accused and investigated for corruption.

 “Importantly, this year’s poor result should serve as a wake-up call to the President that his efforts are not good enough, as they have only taken the country backward in its anti-corruption drive”, he urges.  

According to him, Liberians have heard more words and promises from the President and other public officials than genuine efforts in the fight against corruption in the country.

“This has to change if the country’s extremely disappointing performance has to be reversed. Massive improvement in score and performance, and not stagnation and further decline, is what the country needs, going forward.”

Mr. Miamen recalls that since 1995, the Corruption Perception Index has been scoring and ranking countries based on how corrupt their public sectors are perceived, according to experts and business executives.

He details that the score ranges from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean), where 0 equals the highest level of perceived public sector corruption and 100 equals the lowest level of perceived public sector corruption.

 He points out that 180 countries were targeted in 2022 as in 2020 and 2021, and that the CPI draws upon 13 data sources, which captured the assessment of experts and business executives on a number of corrupt behaviors in the public sector. 

Meanwhile, Miamen warns that if Liberia must get on the right trajectory in terms of fighting corruption, President Weah should lead by example and pursue a sincere and holistic fight against corruption that does not protect certain individuals and groups accused and investigated for corruption, especially his confidantes.

He recommends that public officials accused and investigated for corruption should be prosecuted and made to face the full weight of the law, stressing that strong administrative actions from the President are also needed to deter corrupt behaviors in and out of government. Editing by Jonathan Browne

NewDawn

The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).
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