President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has charged the Ministry of Justice to continue the campaign to make Liberia a corruption-free society. Addressing heads of Liberia’s security sector when she paid an early morning visit to the Ministry of Justice on Thursday, President Sirleaf said corruption is still a cancer in Liberia and that the Ministry of Justice should stand firm to help weed out this menace from the Liberian society.
“We can’t build the roads and improve the schools and improve the salaries and do all of that if there is continued leakage into private purposes,” President Sirleaf stressed.
The Liberian leader challenged every Liberian to be involved in the ongoing fight against corruption that has witnessed the creation of institutions such as the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC), the Internal Audit Secretariat, and the Public Procurement and Concession Commission (PPCC).
“It is a challenge for all of us. It’s a challenge for almost every Liberian who wants to see public resources used for the betterment of the lives of Liberian people. We can’t have it both ways”, the President added.
The President emphasized that in spite of numerous anti-graft legislations, policies, various accountability and integrity institutions, the battle against corruption cannot be won without implementation.
Speaking directly to officials of the government leading prosecutorial agency, the Liberian Chief Executive directed the Ministry of Justice to step up efforts in prosecuting alleged corrupt officials.
The President said, “Unless you can punish a few people – unless you can show that dishonesty does not pay – all of the [anti-graft] efforts amount to nothing.”
President Sirleaf called on the officials of the Justice Ministry to remain in the forefront of the battle against corruption and urged Min. Benedict Sannoh to strengthen the effectiveness of the prosecution arm of the Justice Ministry to enable it take concrete actions against those involved in corrupt practices.
Upon taking office in 2005, President Sirleaf declared corruption as a major public enemy, which she vowed to stem out of the Liberian society.