It appears like the coming in of the International Monterey Fund (IMF) to put some austerity measures into place is beginning to bite. This has led to the discovery of US$50,000(Fifty thousand United States dollars) monthly payment to Monrovia City Mayor, Jefferson T. Koijee.
The US$50,000(Fifty thousand United States dollars) which has been running for over a year , was stopped by the IMF technical team because it sees no justification for the monthly payment to Mayor Korjee, from the Central bank of Liberia.
A document seen by this paper said that the IMF has decided to put some strong economic policies into place at the bank. So, when the team saw the flow of the money, it raised red flag.
This has annoyed Mayor Korjee and has taken out personal issues with a top official at the CBL. However, the official who declined to be quoted said, “that is the work of the IMF and not me put a stop to it.”
It can be recalled that the Liberian government said it needed some financial rescue package from the world international financial institution. But the IMF laid out some rules; one of which is to ensure complete transparency and led its technical staff to work with some key government institutions.
When this paper contacted Mayor Korje’s office for comments, the communication director, Pekeleh Gbuapay earlier denied his boss receiving such amount, but later confirmed that the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC) used to receive funds from some government institutions, including the CBL, LPRC to clean the city when they were economically challenged.
That at the time Mayor Korjee took office over a year ago, the city of Monrovia was littered with huge garbage and they needed funds to clean the city, despite assistance from the World bank.
“When it comes to the amount , you said 50,000?, it is not to my knowledge. But what I can recall is that during our struggling times when the city was challenged in terms of garbage, there are other agencies including the CBL, LPRC and other operations, that aided us in the process of funding us or give us assistance in terms of cleaning the garbage. For the issues of US$50,000, that is not actually to my knowledge. We can not speak to that.”
“When the mayor took over(2018, it was our struggling period. We faced challenge, if not mistaking, it was within, can remember, it was for one year,” he said. Referring to the length of time the City of Monrovia faced struggling times.
Still, he continued: “Our struggle has not ended. We have just been able to find some solutions to the issue of waste. MCC as an institution, we will still remain challenged with the issue of waste and will still need help from other institutions.
Questions of getting funding from the World Bank, he admitted it but said this it has mainly been in technical support-by giving them equipment. But he pointed out that besides the equipment, “the World bank is also sponsoring our CLUS project. Usually when world bank is sponsoring the CLUS project, there will be some financial thing towards the project.” He did not say how much funds the world bank has provided towards the CLUS project.
The CLUS project is implemented by the project implementation Unit (PIU) at the Monrovia City Cooperation (MCC). The project endeavors to strengthen the solid waste management sector of Monrovia which is acquiring greater importance within the Government of Liberia (GOL)’s development agenda. The GOL’S Medium Team Economic Growth and Development Strategy (2013-2017) aims, among others to increase access to sanitation and reduce disposal of solid waste.
The CLUS project with finding from the Liberia Reconstruction Trust Fund (LRTF) through the World Bank (WB) is designed as an urban development project with solid waste as an entry point.
According to him, at some point, the world bank could not support the project because the government needed to provide about 60% while the world bank provided 40% of its commitment. “At the time, the world bank said it could not do it becase the government had not lived up to its obligation,” he said.
So, he added, “At the time we did not have the help from world bank as we are having now.
For funding it is still coming on, but as far as I am concerned, MCC will always need help from those institutions, like the CBL, as long as the issue of waste remains a major challenge.
I can not tell you how much we received from these institutions. The fact remains that they aided us in the process.”
He continued: “if the fundings are still coming from CBL, LPRC, I can not speak to that. But as far as I am concerned, MCC as an institution, will always need help from those institutions like CBL, LPRC as long as the issue of waste remains a major challenge for the country.”
“What I am aware of as the communication person for MCC, is during our struggling times , we used to receive money from these institutions. I can not tell you how much we received and how much those institution gave.”
The world bank was not immediate available for comments on how much has been given to MCC.