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GeneralLiberia news

Civil Society Consortium welcomes audit 

By Naneka Hoffman 

The Consortium of Civil Society Organizations (CCSOs) welcomes President Joseph Nyuma Boakai’s call for a comprehensive audit of the administration of former president George Weah.  

 In a recent press conference held in Monrovia, the Executive Chairman of the Consortium John D. Pangbe, said the group believes that such audit will put to an end the blame game of past and current administrations experienced over the years in Liberia.

He said it will also provide insight into stewardship, accountability, transparency, public management, controls, including physical and financial assets of the past regime.

He noted that informing the Liberian people through audits about where the Boakai-Koung administration is picking up from will put to rest debate on the country’s net international reserves between former President Weah and President Boakai with the past administration claiming it left US$40 million in the GoL’s consolidated account balance as of January 19, 2024, but President Boakai disagrees, rather reporting US$20.5 million. 

Mr. Pangbe said auditing all government entities will set the stage for transparency and accountability as well as inculcate public trust in the operation of the new government.

He said as civil society actors, they are concerned about looming national security implications, considering the statutory functions of the NSA, which amongst others, are to collect, analyze disseminate overt political, economic, cultural, and sociological Intelligence for the Republic.

He said after thorough consultations by former and current security experts and in-depth analysis of the consequences of holistically auditing the NSA, the consortium is of the strongest conviction that such action could expose, undermine, and endanger the operation of that body, thus posing life-threatening danger to agents/ operatives of the NSA considering their covert and overt operation. 

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He said under such circumstances, and considering that the NSA deals with secret or politically sensitive subjects which restrain the information they provide their auditors, normally that is not because they do not want to be accountable, but because they are afraid of a breach of security or confidentiality by the auditor, or to improve the willingness of the auditee to provide the auditor with the information needed, the process should guarantee the auditee (NSA) that secret or sensitive information will not be released outside the procedure of the GAC. 

He suggested that to ensure international best practices depending on the level of secrecy, the GAC should take appropriate measures to safeguard information from unauthorized access, adding that these measures shall even include secluded rooms, a specific secret registry, a tapping-proof discussion room, and installation of Tempest-proof copying machines and computers, among others. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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