-In Fighting Corruption
President George Manneh Weah has described payroll padding or the placement of ghost names on payrolls, and other corrupt practices as a long-existed phenomenon in Liberia’s public service which previous political administrations failed to eradicate. He promised that his administration would continue to take the rightful steps in order to end such practices.
According to an Executive Mansion release, President Weah said his administration would do everything possible and necessary in supporting anti-graft institutions towards ending fraudulent fiscal practices in Government.
Dedicating state-of-the-art facilities at the Internal Audit Agency (IAA) in Congo Town Monday, February 18, 2019, President Weah acknowledged the monumental task of ending corruption but said continuous necessary support and encouragement to anti-graft agencies such as the IAA will uncover and nip in the bud fiscal malfeasances at government institutions.
President Weah noted that waste, abuse and pillage of public resources have continuously undermined Liberia’s development since independence, emphasizing that past administrations have fought fruitlessly to end corruption.
He observed that despite consistent and relentless efforts, officials of government continue to violate the public trust with impunity.
President Weah reiterated his inaugural pledge when he said his administration would spare no effort to fight corruption. He said government has been working to equip anti-graft institutions in fulfillment of that pledge.
“In fulfilment of this pledge, my Administration has committed significant resources to anti-graft institutions, including the Internal Audit Agency,” he said. “And we will continue to provide the necessary support that these institutions need to do their job.”
The Liberian leader also disclosed that the administration is presently prosecuting Government employees who have been found engaged in fiscal misdeeds, stressing, “All those that will be found guilty will be dealt with in keeping with the full weight of the law.”
He applauded the IAA for robustly working to help the government realize its anti-graft pledge.
“Since its establishment, the Internal Audit Agency has been doing a commendable job in cleaning our Government’s payrolls padded with ghost workers,” he acknowledged.
As a result of IAA’s robustness and alertness to fight corruption and clean payroll of ghost names, President Weah said millions of dollars have been saved from such exercises conducted at the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education.
President Weah said: “Today, we are here to dedicate the modern facilities that have been installed in this building to be used by the Internal Audit Agency in the execution of its mission to uncover and prevent corruption and fraud in the Ministries, Agencies, Commissions, and other State-owned Enterprises of the Liberian Government.”
He thanked the leadership and staff of the IAA for a job well done so far, and expressed the hope that the modern, state-of-the-art equipment will enable the Agency become even more effective in the fight against graft and corruption.
The facilities dedicated by the President include a testing center for professional certification, modern computer lab, two audit pools, CCTV equipment, among others.
Several officials of government including Finance and Development Planning Minister, Samuel Tweah, Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Hon. Nathaniel F. McGill and many others attended the occasion.