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Poverty reaches 68 percent under the Weah government

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-opposition UP official

A stalwart of the former ruling Unity Party says poverty has reached 68 percent under the Weah Government.

Mr. Amos Tweh, also a strong member of the four opposition Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) criticized the Weah-led government, saying it is doing absolutely nothing to lifting citizens out of poverty as promised during the 2017 elections.

“Oh yeah I agree with the Minister to talk is very easy, but to implement is difficult that’s why under this CDC regime poverty is at its highest level of 68 percent, compared to the previous regime”, he said.

A former deputy minister of internal affairs for urban from the Sirleaf administration, Mr. Tweh spoke Monday, June 21, 2021, during a live talk show on OK FM via mobile along with deputy minister of youth and sports Isaac Doe of the George Weah administration.

The former official lamented the bad running of the state by the CDC-led government, accusing it of failing to live up to campaign promises, which is contributing to increased poverty.

The two men were specifically invited to give their thoughts on former Vice President Joseph N. Boakai’s recent interview with Spoon FM and to discuss other key issues of national concern.

In his introductory remarks, Mr. Tweh said the recent interview by Mr. Boakai, who is seeking the presidency, proffered key policy recommendations which he said will lift Liberians out of poverty if the former Vice President is elected President.

“It’s unfortunate that our friends from the other side will say Amb. Boakai didn’t say anything new during the interview or didn’t do anything for this country while serving in the public for 42 years, and subsequently serving as vice president for 12 years”, he argued.

He said it was due to the leadership ability of Amb. Boakai that Liberia started transporting iron ore, cocoa, adding the agriculture hub that is in Bong, Nimba, and Lofa counties were as a result of the former vice president’s intervention, and leadership efforts, saying those are some of the good things the former vice president did for Liberia.

Tweh maintained the interview was meant for the former vice president to tell the Liberian people his plans, visions and to share his experience about what he was able to do while serving as vice president.

He said the legacy left behind by the former vice president while serving the country from the former LPMC, including the Ministry of Agriculture and the LPRC prior to becoming vice president is enormous, adding that while serving as vice president in the Sirleaf regime, the agriculture sector was used as a vehicle and a critical driver for enhancing economic growth, economic development, and creation of jobs.

Tweh explained that those engagements helped to minimize corruption, noting that from 2006 to2016 poverty was significantly reduced by an average of 16 percent, which was as a consequence of the then government utilizing the agriculture sector, like a vehicle and critical driver for enhancing economic development.

“We all witnessed the signing of various agreements including the Sime Darby and others that the government utilized to increase jobs and enhance economic growth.”

He wondered whether the CDC-led government has been able to utilize the agriculture sector as spelled out in its Pro-Poor Agenda for Development and Prosperity (PAPD) to increase jobs and reduce poverty.

He recalled that in 2020, the World Bank released a report that indicated that 665,000 Liberians were at risk of sinking into poverty, because of the CDC-led government’s failure to implement its economic policy.

But in response, deputy youth and sports minister Isaac Doe said Liberians should be grateful for services the former vice president made to the country in his youthful years.

However, minister Doe thinks following those years of services, Mr. Boakai has nothing to offer again.

He argued the former vice president has had every opportunity to give back to Liberia, but as we speak, it’s impossible for somebody to think that something is left with Mr. Boakai.

He said there are records of the former vice president performance during his 42 years of service, adding that he didn’t do much and there is absolutely nothing the former vice president said that hasn’t been said in this country, as all of what he said on Spoon TV are a repeat of the same thing people have been saying.

Minister Doe asked what is there for Liberians to see from former Vice President Boakai, saying “and I really don’t want my brother Amos to say Amb. Boakai was a vice president so he couldn’t do anything. Is he going to be telling some of us who are in government today not to do anything because we aren’t the President?” He asked.

“The UP can’t use the CPP as a riding object to get back in power”, the ruling party official defended. By Lewis S. Teh, Editing by Jonathan Browne

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