-Must Be In Need Of ‘Political’ Tetanus Shot
By Esau J. Farr
An old adage has it that it is not good to be quick or fast to judge or insult a man who stays longer on the farm until his friends are in bed; the simple reason is that it could be that he might just be in the hands of something or something might be in his hands.
And it seems that it is a similar thing that is happening to the forensic report surrounding the reported “Missing Billions” Liberian bank notes.
In mid-2018, the government of Liberia under the leadership of President George M. Weah through its Information Minister announced on the Voice of America (VOA) about a reported disappearance of L15.5Bn Liberian banknotes something that steered the country with mixed reactions as others pointed accusing fingers at both past and present top government officials of being behind the alleged disappearance of the money.
Due to the grave nature of the situation, the government of Liberia instituted an investigative committee to probe the matter a decision some Liberians especially those from the opposition bloc seriously opposed.
Again, based on perceived lack of trust in the government’s established investigative team to conduct and release a factual finding of circumstances surrounding the missing money, Liberians under the banner Concerned Citizens United to Bring Our Money Back (COCUBOM) led by the Economic Freedom Fighters of Liberia (EFFL)staged a peaceful protest on the 24th of September 2018.
The protesters presented statements and petition to the government of Liberia and her international partners calling for an independent investigative team outside of government; preferably the international community with the United States of America taking the lead.
With no hesitation, the US Embassy in Monrovia responded in affirmative and brought into the country a group of forensic investigative team inclusive of FBI officials and made it clear that it did not want to work with any investigator from the government of Liberia to the delight of protesters and Liberians who wanted to get to the crust of the matter.
In early October 2018, the news broke out about the presence of the forensic investigators into Liberia, something that was later confirmed by the US Embassy in Monrovia.
Since then, Liberians have patiently waited for the report from the international investigators to date, but in vain as there have been no sign of the report fast coming.
To add insult to injury, the Central Bank of Liberia late last year told the people of Liberia that internal investigation done by the CBL and documents in her possession revealed that the money in question was received and placed in the vaults of the bank and that everything was in tight.
According to the release from the CBL, the special investigative committee which included the Ministries of Finance, Justice the Liberia National Police and later the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) is yet to release any report to the people of Liberia and it is almost seen like there would never be any report from that committee.
Of recent, there have been rumors from the corridor of the government and the public that the report from the international investigators is ready while others have said that the report has been presented to the government of Liberia, but there are fears to make the report public.
Some have hinted that findings from the report are gloomy and may cast a dark cloud over the progress of development and progress of the administration of President Weah.
A highly placed government official hinted this paper Thursday January 24, 2019 that the report is being withheld to allow President George M. Weah to deliver on the state of affairs of the country’s economy on Monday January 28, 2019 for fear of reprise from the public due to the clumsy nature of the report before it is made available to the public.
One elderly man who preferred not to be named told New Republic that his last hope is in the US to make good her promise and integrity by releasing the actual report from the investigation surrounding the missing billion saga.
The situation has forced many to either speculate or insinuate that the report is being wrapped up by the web produced by the age old virus (corruption) that has and continues to eat off the fabric of the country or is being hooked by the ‘old rusty nails’ of public officials who are bent on hiding needed information from the public which is their fundamental rights on information guaranteed under the organic law of the country to know. TNR