Global Witness, an international watchdog has again discovered as former officials of the Liberian Government without any remorse dance into taxpayers’ monies by chopping millions of United States dollars allegedly made available by Exxon.
According to the investigation conducted by GW, Exxon’s purchase in 2013 was also accompanied by over $200,000 in unusual, large payments made by the corruption-tainted Liberian oil agency to six Liberian officials who approved the deal.
Officials who received payments include Liberia’s then-Justice, Finance and Mining Ministers, each of whom received $35,000 – more than doubling their annual salaries.
The officials linked to receiving the unusual payments include: Finance Minister Former finance Amara Konneh, former Justice Minister Christiana Tah, Mining Minister Patrick Sendolo, former National Investment Chairman Natty Davis, former NOCAL CEO Randolph McClain and former NOCAL Board Chair Robert Sirleaf.
Robert Sirleaf, is the son of then-President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, was reportedly working pro-bono at the time.
Three officials who received payments – Davis, Sirleaf and Tah – have stated that they were “bonuses,” authorized by NOCAL’s Board of Directors for negotiating a good deal with Exxon. Details of these responses can be found in Global Witness’ report. There is no evidence that Exxon knew about these payments, but they were likely made from the same oil agency account into which Exxon had just deposited $5 million.
Exxon, Broadway Consolidated/Peppercoast, and those who received the unusual, large payments should be investigated to determine if they broke laws in the US and Liberia.