By Lincoln G. Peters
A total of US$650,000 has been approved for the inauguration of President-elect Amb. Joseph Nyumah Boakai and his deputy, Sen. Jeremiah Koung which is due on 22 January 2024.
Outgoing Liberia President Amb. George Manneh Weah has approved the amount to be used by the Joint Presidential Transitional Team (JPTT) for the inaugural activities of the incoming President, Amb. Boakai.
Boakai and his vice president-elect Sen. Koung won the 2023 presidential run-off held on 14 November on an opposition ticket, ending the six-year rule of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC)-led government.
Disclosure of the approved inaugural budget was made Thursday, 4 January 2024 in the C. Cecil Dennis Auditorium of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Monrovia.
At a media briefing following the climax of the JPTT meeting, JPTT Co-Chairperson Cllr. Samuel Kofi Woods said the Government of Liberia through President Weah approved the JPTT budget recently.
“The budget of the Joint Presidential Committee has been approved by the outgoing President of Liberia, Amb. George M. Weah. The average amount of the budget is six hundred and fifty thousand United States Dollars,” said Cllr. Woods.
“We are grateful to the President for this step taken. It’s also important to note that what we recommend to President Weah has been approved. It was approved on December 8. We extoll the outgoing administration for the cooperation,’’ Woods noted.
According to Cllr. Woods, their meeting on Thursday focused on the report from the inaugural committee, saying the budget of the committee has been approved by President Weah.
Woods detailed that President Weah has committed to ensuring that the process is accelerated and the full cooperation of the government is in place.
He revealed that all agencies and machinery that should be in place to accelerate the process are being authorized and informed to come together to make the inauguration second to none.
Cllr. Woods further indicated that they also received reports from the various working groups, adding that they have established over twelve clusters that have been working with various government ministries and agencies on systematic areas of governance.
“We expect that by the next meeting, we will get all the information moving forward. We received what was the outline for the final reporting. We have a committee that has been set up,” he said.
Cllr. Woods said significant progress has been made, and they will ensure that they have a peaceful transition.
For his part, outgoing Liberian Foreign Minister Dee-Maxwell Saah Kemaya expressed excitement and appreciation to the incoming leadership for its level of cooperation and cordial working relationship to usher in a new leadership.
“We will continue to give the public the necessary information with regard to the progress of the JPTT. We had a meeting with the President of Liberia, Mr. Weah, and Amb. Boakai and it was very fruitful and productive,” said Amb. Kemayah.
“We are not doing a favor to the Liberian people, rather it’s an unconditional obligation. This is not the last and there will be many. But we are very pleased with the level of cooperation and spirit of nationalism,’’ he stated.