An Urgent Need To Privatize LEC Emphasized

Hampered with full scale of effectiveness; overwhelmed by unreliable capacity, ability, inefficiency; proficiency and capability coupled with insincerity and dishonesty to professionally administer the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) now dubbed: ‘let enjoy corruption’, wherein professional service (electrical energy) will be provided without hiccups in deliverance; public outcry is weighing gravely to transition to another dimension.   

Earlier, the public was made to know that the current, with extended support from the World Bank was established for the country wherein to profoundly empower majority of the population that may not enjoy the comfort and privilege in obtaining a government’s employment rather venture in the private sector with their individual and large scale businesses; relying on the electricity to power their respective factors of production; ensuring that the current will be available and affordable.

However, available and affordable can only be referred to as a pain in the neck of LEC’s management team. Consistent long list of obstacles; grim reflection of power theft by some unscrupulous individuals including some insiders continue to pillage the government establishment; and sadly, even some users who have purchased their current, are blocked out without receiving their legitimate service; instead, for some strange and quasi-explanation and reasons, some houses located in the same block as close neighbors get current. This is preposterous.

Whether it is based on gross management’s incompetence to cope with the prevailing task or catalogued hurdles of unresolved technical, insincerity mating dishonesty including short comings; the time is ripe to take on another system and methods of conducting the electricity menace.

Such most needed vision was once targeted by the late Harry Greaves, but somewhere down the road, his shining effort was bureaucratically smashed and then thwarted; sending the nation’s electricity venture back to square one. Time to engage another approach; that is while we support an urgent need to privatize LEC which cannot be over emphasized

Meanwhile, the Board Chair of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) Monie Captan has stressed that he wants Liberians to have a say when it comes to the distribution of electricity on grounds that they are the major shareholders.

Mr. Captan indicated that there is a breakdown in accountability because most, if not all the law creating public entities requires the President to work along with the boards and the managing directors of that institution.

He spoke recently at the African Corporate Governance Network (ACGN) Stakeholder Workshop for the Formation of Institute of Directors in Liberia held at a local hotel in Central Monrovia.

Speaking on corporate governance culture in Liberia in the public and private sector, Captan says, public corporations should be held accountable for efficiency at the same time, calling on Liberians to hold these corporations accountable for their performances.

He stresses the need for board members to be effective in the discharge of their duties, noting that most of the appointments are done squarely by the President, and that the board of directors does not have a say in the hiring and firing of these people, which makes it difficult to hold their feet to the fire.

This, he also believes, becomes terrible for people who are hired to run the affairs of their various institutions saying, “I don’t see how the board can effectively manage and provide the oversight that corporate governance needs.”

“In order for the board to take responsibility, it is important for the board to have a saying in the selection of management to be natural, because the board represents the shareholders, and the shareholders for all of the public corporations, is the government.”

Captan noted: “we need to understand that having effective corporate governance, competent and accountable, management is in the interest of any administration because it directly impacts the performance of the corporation, so if you have a public corporation that is not performing, not providing services to the public, it impacts the administration’s poor ability to deliver to the public”. He added,

“So I think any administration seeing the bigger picture will realize that it is in the interest of the government to have the system where it has private and good corporate governance.”

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