The Government of Liberia and the Consortium of Public Sector Workers have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the latter’s grievances. The MOU followed four days of closed doors meeting held with youth groups that had planned to protest and call for the removal of the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel Tweah.
Addressing a news conference in Monrovia Tuesday, Minister Tweah said the consortium of public sector workers and the Government of Liberia have resolved to work together to promote the spirit of unity for the growth of the country.
“Today, we are excited to announce that the Government of Liberia and the consortium of public sector workers have resolved to working in one accord to addressing the misunderstanding between the two parties, including their disenchantments and grievances, beginning now we will all work together for the growth of the country”, Minister Tweah disclosed.
In remarks following the signing ceremony, the president of the consortium of the public sector workers Mulbah Johnson expressed delight for the MOU, which he terms as a milestone for public sectors workers particularly teachers and other prominent people in the country.
He thanked the government for reaching an agreement with the consortium, saying, for almost four days they had have series of discussions with officials of government and relevant institutions. “We also want to thank the student groups for mounting pressure which led to their signing of the MOU”, Mr. Johnson said.
According to him, government’s decision to have pensioned individuals who haven’t yet reached retirement age is something that has sparked debates in street corners, but he is optimistic the MOU will address those sticky issues confronting the body.
“This MOU will inform authorities at the Civil Service Agency, NASSCORP that there is a law that calls for the retirement of individuals, and that law says the pension age per person is sixty”, he stressed, noting that they have requested the CSA to print the MOU into handbill to be placed at the institution to avoid unnecessary pensioning of individuals.
Recently the Government of Liberia and the Consortium of Public Sector Workers and student groupings comprising the Federation of Liberian Youth (FLY), Liberia National Students Union (LINSU) and the Mano River Youth Parliament or MRYP Liberia chapter postponed a planned protest to demand the removal of the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel Tweah.
They accused the Finance Minister of poor performance and being an architect of the bad state of the economy. According to them, Minister Tweah’s dismal performance is responsible for the challenging economic situation that has engulfed Liberia.
But speaking on behalf of the government to scores of reporters recently following a closed doors meeting with the various groupings, the Chief Imam of Liberia, Ali Krayee said, the groups agreed to defer their planned protest to an unspecified date to allow them sit with relevant stakeholders and government officials to derive concrete solutions to the state of the economy.
“The planned actions that should have been taken have been postponed indefinitely, pending further discussion with relevant government authorities for now.
We aren’t saying they have cancelled it, but at least their actions will not be taken, rather these groups have all agreed to meet government ministries at the Ministerial Complex in Congo Town outside Monrovia to discuss practical solutions to their problems, because the Ministry of Finance alone can’t solve those problems; there are teachers and other key players involved”, said Imam Krayee.
By Lewis S. Teh–Editing by Jonathan Browne