President George Manneh Weah Thursday appealed to Senegal’s Macky Sall to support his administration in any way possible to help him jump-start the Liberian economy, saying the country’s economy is in a deplorable state.
Weah, who is on a three nation tour to solicit assistance from bilateral partners, told members of the Liberian Legislature few weeks ago that the country’s reserve was at an all-time low, a statement which is now being challenge by former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who said she left about US$150 million in the country’s Central Bank’s reserved.
Mrs. Sirleaf met a little under US$5 million when she took over the country’s economy in January 2006 with a budget of US80 million, but said she left a reserved of US150 million with a budget of over half a billion United States Dollars. This paper is seeking the latest update on the country’s reserve from the Central Bank of Liberia for subsequent publication.
“He (President Weah) used the occasion to inform his counterpart about the deplorable state of the Liberian economy …appealed to the Senegalese Government to support his administration in any way that they can in an effort to jump-start the Liberian economy,” a dispatch from the Senegalese capital, Dakar quoted President Weah as saying.
Weah, according to the dispatch said unemployment here is at an unprecedented high, so are expectations, adding that “his government will not be able to deliver on the promise of change for the betterment of Liberia and the people of Liberia, without urgent and significant assistance from friendly governments.”
Weah, said a support from such friendly government will help his administration focus on the structural adjustments; institutional and policy frameworks, that will allow his administration to achieve sustainable and stable improvements in the economy, in the medium long term.
The Liberian economy is at one of its worst moment with the Liberian Dollar in continues free fall against major currencies such as the United States Dollar, while youth unemployment rate remain high amidst a debate over how much was actually left as reserved by the former government.
A directive issued by President Weah to put a freeze on the accounts of ministries and agencies here have left the economic stagnant, with checks issues or paid to vendors by these sectors being rejected by banking institutions.
Weah told Mr. Sall that youth unemployment remains one of the greatest threats to peace and long-term stability here.
Sall assured Weah that his government stands ready to support his government’s pro-poor agenda in the areas of capacity building, education and healthcare. He further acknowledged the longstanding relationship that exists between both countries and the need to further strengthen that relationship for the common good of their respective countries.
By Othello B. Garblah