Editorial: ‘Toothless’ Commerce Ministry Or….?
Except for a few in the public service, life in Liberia continues to be unbearable day-by-day for ordinary Liberians due to the high cost of living. Least to think about other parts of the country, most Liberians residing in Monrovia and its environs hardly afford a meal a day, and if there should be one, it is either plain rice without any nutritional ingredients or bugger wheat with salt and palm oil.
Interestingly, in most neighborhoods characterized by abject poverty, cordiality between the have and have-not is plagued with the highest degree of selfishness and high borders and fences. Further exacerbating such poverty-stricken situation are the inflated prices of goods and services, of course not only in Monrovia and its environs, but across the entire country. Probably owing to the weakness and inability of the Government of Liberia, through the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, trade and commerce have become so exploitative and to certain extent, criminal.
The reality to the foregoing may be the determination of prices of goods and services (including transportation) by actors of the private business sector in the country, even though the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has always and continue to pretend to regulating trade and commerce.
Of course, statutorily the Ministry is charged with the responsibility of regulating businesses in the Republic, but it seems difficult to determine whether those who have administer and continue to conduct its affairs have had or do have the ‘will-power’ to actually perform such in the general interest of the nation for the past six years.
Even more worrisome is the quality of goods brought or imported, as well as services provided by most of these ‘business people’ to include non-Liberians. It is no secret (and officials of the Commerce Ministry must be aware) that most goods brought into the country are either substandard or expired, but again …The weakness and inability of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in ensuring efficiency in enforcing its statutory within the business community may be a result of complacency on the part of its officials on whom Liberians greatly depend due to various interests.
Though Madam President may be over-looking this unfortunate situation at the Ministry, it must be said that it is equally undermining her administration and even making it unpopular.
To be continued.