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In Five Years of Governance: Weah’s Men Catalog Achievements

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By: Varney Dukuly

MONROVIA: As the 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections draw near, two influential and powerful officials of incumbent President George Manneh Weah’s ‘Kitchen Cabinet’ including Finance and Development Planning Minister, Samuel D. Tweah Jr.; and Liberia Maritime Authority (LMA) Commissioner General, Lenn Eugene Nagbe, have been cataloging the national development achievements of the President since his incumbency in 2018.
The two governing party officials, Tweah and Nagbe took the airwaves of the nation via the State-owned Liberia Broadcasting System (LBS), on Monday, June 19, 2023.

Both officials of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) told the nation that the opposition political parties led by former Vice President, Joseph Nyuma Boakai, who is also political leader of the erstwhile governing Unity Party (UP), absolutely have nothing to rescue the Liberian people from after Boakai and the UP ‘squandered twelve unbroken years when they governed the country.

Speaking to a panel of journalists, the two officials on Monday opened up relative to the President’s achievements, showcasing pictures of major progress including macro-economic growth and development since the election of Weah to the Liberian Presidency.
Minister Tweah sought to shine light on a deep chill that has raised local concerns about the growing risk of shrink of economic activities in the country.
The three-hour Talk-show which capped the achievements of the incumbent President’s administration by Minister Tweah and Commissioner Nagbe, sent a signal that, at least for now, the government does not want its achievements to be interpreted by “hostile opposition” members.

Tweah recognized that lifting the Liberian people out of poverty as enshrined in the government’s flagship national development program, styled: “Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD), was a resounding success story.

“In January 2018, George Weah inherited two million Liberians living in extreme poverty; George Weah pledged to lift a million of those people out of poverty that was the goal of the PAPD, in his first year of his administration, the President lifted 24 thousand people out of poverty,” said Tweah on the state radio.

Minister Tweah approvingly said the poverty rate as of 2014 to now in Liberia has significantly reduced under the watchful eyes of President Weah, contrary to perception in the public but he failed to state the rate at which it has reduced.

“We inherited US$85 to 100 million in the reserve but we have raised that amount to around US$400 million,” Tweah said, in response to a question about if the government inherited an empty reserve from the past administration.

The Finance and Development Planning Minister criticized the domestic debt portfolio during the erstwhile regime of the Unity Party which is now headed by the former Vice President, also a Presidential Hopeful, describing it as dangerous.

He maintains that it was President Weah who brought transparency to government’s debt statistics process.

Tweah: “President Weah inherited around US$900 million external debt, he inherited two million people in poverty, he took those inheritances and put them through his transformative metrics and today we have the magical economic number that we have, inflation coming down from 30% to 7%, we have nearly four months of import on reserve, we have exchange rate stability; over all, it has been established that macro-economic fundamentals are stronger now.”
Interestingly, Tweah said Liberia’s current gross domestic products (GDP) stands at three point five billion and that all the goods and services produced in the country’s economy are real money as opposed to what the ex-ruling Unity Party government had, then.

On the question of road and infrastructure, the Commissioner General of the Liberia Maritime Authority, Lenn Eugene Nagbe, said the government is single-handedly financing the road project from Ganta to Sacleapea in Nimba County as a way of easing the constraints faced by the people.
Commissioner Nagbe added that Arcelor Mittal is not the sole financier of the road project as it is being speculated in some quarters but also the government through the usage of the Liberian people money.

The two ruling party executives appeared consistent relative to their position over multiple gains made from the Economy, Roads and Infrastructure, Agriculture and the Health sector, telling the Liberian people that President Weah has achieved.
“I have come to talk about the President’s successes and if you minus road from it, that is a big one and I will not allow anyone to take that from his key achievements. That Ganta to Zewdrue road pavement is a major economic corridor,” said Commissioner Nagbe who described President Weah as a man with vision to fix the country’s roads network.
He said many development projects are ongoing in the country and the President is determined to improve the livelihood of the vast majority of ordinary citizens.

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