MONROVIA–Grand Bassa County District #3 Representative, Matthew Joe has disclosed that one of Liberia’s biggest investment companies, Acelormittal is not living up to the people of Grand Bassa expectation.
Representative Joe said the Mineral Development Agreement (MDA) should be the guard between the Liberian Government, the ordinary citizens and the company, but said action of Acelormittal is not going down well with the citizens.
Speaking on the OK FM morning show Thursday, September 2, 2021, the Grand Bassa County Lawmaker said his people have been having problems with Acelormittal, nothing that the problem has to do with how the company is taking care of the concession areas.
The lawmaker said some of the places citizens of Grand Bassa have always complained about include their residence, unhealthy treatment given to the people are all factors associated with the citizens criticizing their activities in the county.
According to him, the company is not prioritizing the citizens of Grand Bassa County stating that there are no jobs available for their citizens, the Social Corporate benefit that the people of Grand Bassa County are to enjoy are not adhered to by the management of Acelormittal.
He said some months ago, the leadership of the Grand Bassa County Legislative Caucus had a meeting with the Management of Acelormittal when they raised those concerns that the people have with the company and to find a solution.
Representative Joe, named education, health, the wellbeing of the concession areas, jobs creation among others as places that need attention from the company.
The Lawmaker furthered that in the MDA, Acelormittal is to construct health facility. That has not been done, but instead they are using the old hospital that was constructed by LAMCO something representative Joe said he told the management of Acelormittal.
He disclosed that in the MDA, it clearly indicated that every year the Management is to allot two hundred thousand United States Dollars for the three affected counties; Bong, Nimba and Grand Bassa for international scholarships.
The Grand Bassa County lawmaker alleged that for 16 years now no citizen from his county has ever benefited from any international scholarship.
Representative Joe said following their inquire from the Management of Acelormittal, the institution told them that the vetting process for students to obtain their international scholarship is done through the Ministry of Education, something he said was contrary to the agreement.
The Grand Bassa lawmaker said through the intervention of President George Weah last year Acelormittal’s management was able to make available the 20 percent of social development funds for those affected communities in line with MDA.
He said the money is to be used for projects for those affected communities through a resolution by the affected communities sitting and Acelormittal will hire contractors that will implement those projects.
He said to date, the AML has the money and nothing is being done up to present to have any project carried out in the county, especially the affected areas.
Representative Joe said AML has also not adhered to the MDA by renovating those buildings that were constructed by LAMCO in Grand Bassa.
He said the property that AML is occupying in Grand Bassa County is for the Liberian people, most especially the citizens of Grand Bassa, noting that it is their responsibility as citizens to ensure that the company properly takes care of those buildings that are being used because it is the property of Liberians.
According him, they as leaders of the country have put stop to the company from demolishing those buildings that were built by LAMCO and turned over to the people of Grand Bassa