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‘No Leftover Money For My Office’

by News Manager

…VP Taylor Denies Turning Over Empty Coffers To VP-elect

MONROVIA: In what seems to be swift reaction to the Wednesday, January 10, 2024 Vol. 17 NO. 006 publication of a local daily, FPA Newspaper, under the headline: “Leaving An Empty Coffer?” Outgoing Vice President, Jewel Howard Taylor, has categorically denied that she has failed to turnover leftover budgetary allotment, under the fiscal year 2023, to incoming Vice President, Jeremiah Kpan Koung.

FPA: “It is reported that, unlike her predecessor, Joseph Nyuma Boakai, who handed over almost half a million United States dollars, gas coupons, and vehicles, unconfirmed reports suggest that the outgoing Vice President is leaving empty coffers for her successor, Jeremiah Koung.”

The daily added that in contrast to Boakai who was still implementing the budget passed in June of 2018, within a biannual fiscal year, “VP Taylor is leaving an empty coffer as she has concluded her fiscal year, which runs yearly”.

But, in reaction, VP Taylor clarified that when she assumed the office of VP from former Vice President Joseph Nyuma Boakai, now President-elect in January 2018, the national budget was allocated on an bi-annual basis (July 1 to June 30).

She said the formulation of budgetary allotment from July 1 to June 30, 2017/2018 speaks to the fact as to why former Vice President Boakai’s budgetary allotment had a leftover.

VP Taylor added that unlike the 2018 scenario with the national budget, the current format in the allocation of national budget which runs from January thru December speaks to the fact that the funds allotted for the functions of the office of the Vice President were expended in the 2023 budget year.

VP Taylor: “When I took over as VP, the budget year was July 1 thru June 30, and that was why funds were left in the budget for the balance 6 months. Currently the budget year runs from January to December. The office of the Vice President is a segment of government operating under approved budget laws of Liberia”.

“The national budget is not for profit and is a cash-based budget. Requests are made from entities and approved based on availability of cash as per the cash plan. Under the new laws, the new budgetary year begins on Jan 1 of each year,” she added.

According to outgoing VP: “The new government will have the unique opportunity to approve this year’s budget according to their plans. If the budget is not approved within the next several months, each entity will request and receive 1/12 of the budget. So, the Office of the incoming Vice President is in no way disadvantaged.”

In adherence to the Revised rule, the tenure of the 54th National Legislative ended on Tuesday, January 10, 2024. It also indicates that the six-year tenure of incumbent President, George Weah, has now ended.

It was on this occasion that Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor who is also President of the Liberian Senate, formally turned over her office and responsibilities to incoming Vice President, Jeremiah Kpan-Koung.

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