Standard Bearer of the Unity Party on national issues affecting Liberia UP Headquarters Broad Street, Monrovia, Liberia August 19, 2022
My fellow Liberians, Ladies and Gentlemen of the Fourth Estate:
A few days ago the Unity Party (UP) released a press statement in which we strongly commended the pronouncement from the U.S. Ambassador to Liberia, in which he stated that three officials of the CDC/Weah-led Government had been placed on Sanctions imposed by the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), based on the Global Manitskey Human Rights Accountability Act, for public Corruption, Money Laundry, and other criminal acts.
Those named were the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs and Chief of Staff, Nathaniel McGill; the Solicitor General of Liberia, Syrenius Cephas; and the Managing Director of the National Port Authority, Bill Tweah-way.
To say the least, as if we had seen the worst that Mr. Weah and his criminal cartel is doing to the nation, the August 15, 2022 sanctions announcement by the U.S. Government through its Ambassador is yet another national and international dishonorable action, vilification and disgrace brought upon the nation by the workings of a rogue regime that is insensitive to the plight of the Liberian people.
While we were unequivocal in our support and commendation of the action taken by the U.S. Government, the lukewarm response of suspension taken by President George Weah towards the three criminal government officials prompted the need for this press conference.
As Standard Bearer of the Unity Party, I call on President Weah to dismiss with immediate effect the sanctioned and disgraced government officials and turn them over for prosecution. The reason I strongly refute the mere suspension announced by President Weah is because it is weak, and will become another of the same diabolical tactics of never-ending investigations we have seen by this criminal and infested government over the past five years. The style of sweeping things under the carpet by this government is the reason we are asking for stronger actions to be taken by President Weah.
The long list of such unsolved criminal acts still under investigation over the past five years, with no credible results, includes the following: missing 16 billion Liberian dollars; 20 million U.S. dollars suspicious mopping exercise; mysterious death of auditors; secret killings; 16 million U.S. dollars COVID-19 food distribution; misapplication of 24 million U.S. dollars from the Road Funds; the gutted LACC’s indictments of the NEC Chairman and the Minister of Agriculture; and the list goes on!
The latest round of sanctions imposed on Liberian government officials by the U.S. Treasury Department, while very troubling, is no surprise to the Liberian people, who have for over 5 years been suffering and have become poorer because of endemic corruption and the predatory nature of the George Weah administration.
Since President Weah took office, he and his officials of government have made a campaign of using their power to loot public coffers for their personal benefits at the expense of the people of this country.
These sanctions are the latest in an unending list of evidence pointing to how a group of individuals in the government hold the country in a stranglehold and created for Liberia a reputation that undermines it standing in the international community and the potential to leverage opportunity at home and abroad for the good of the people of Liberia. The threat and the potential consequences of these sanctions go beyond the corridors of power in Washington D.C; it reverberates in the capitals of countries in the sub-region and the world, and undercut the investment climate to woe serious people to do business in the country.
Although the sanctions imposed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is highly targeted and selective, however, in view of this latest development and the culture of corruption pervasive in this government, I am demanding swift actions from President Weah to at the minimum terminate his Minister of State, the Solicitor General, and the Managing Director of the National Port Authority. Their continued presence in government at that high level despite years of public outcry over corruption will only but plunge the country and the people into further worsening economic woes.
In addition, I demand that President Weah also mounts an all-out investigation of his entire government with a goal of delivering a comprehensive report to the Liberian people and the international community to address and cleanse the government of corruption ahead of honoring any invitation from President Joe Biden to attend the forthcoming summit on Democracy in the USA.
Fellow Liberians, I have addressed the question of corruption all my public life as the one problem, amongst a host of others, that causes underdevelopment and deprivation. I have said in the past and I am saying it again that Corruption is a poison that destroys everything it touches, including a nation. I am also on record to say that Liberia is not a poor country, but the perennial problem facing this country is mainly triggered by the lack of a sound and honest leadership. This is why I ran for the presidency of our beloved country in 2017, and I will contest again in 2023, on a record of integrity and honesty because my concern remains the ensuring of a better image of Liberia that would stop the deterioration of bad governance and propel the country on a path of change and sustainable development for the good and betterment of the Liberian people.
We must rise up and seize this moment. We should not give these rascals more years of anguish, stealing, and public mismanagement. We should issue Mr. George Weah and his gang of thieves red cards in 2023 and make them accountable for bad governance and the ills done against the State and its people.
Over the next few days, I will hold wide and intense political consultation with my allies and other leaders of the opposition community to discuss a possible and needed political action against RAMPANT and uncontrollable Corruption and the continued Culture of Impunity.
In closing, my fellow Liberians, another major concern I have is the continuous printing of Liberian dollar bank notes by this government that is not reported to the public, including information of disbursement in order to provide proper accountability. The question is: Why is this government printing so much money, especially on the heel of the pending presidential elections due in 14 months? If the intent of the government is to use these unaccounted for money to bribe you the Liberian voters to keep them in power, let me be the first to say to you, TAKE AND EAT that money if given to you. That money truly belongs to you. They are doing you no favor because the money is yours. But there is one thing you must remember to do: VOTE THEM OUT OF POWER!
As I always say, in everything we do, let us THINK LIBERIA, LOVE LIBERIA, and together BUILD LIBERIA.