LIBERIA: Civil Society Group Threatens Mass Protest In Demand Of Samuel Tweah’s Dismissal
The National Revolutionary Movement of Liberia, a civil society organization, has disclosed plans to stage a massive protest on June 16, 2022, at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP).
The group says the protest is intended to force the arrest and prosecution of the Minister of Finance, Samuel D, Tweah for allegedly stealing over US$20 Million intended for roads rehabilitation and construction.
Addressing the media recently, the spokesperson of the group, Siaffa Kanneh narrated that Minister Tweah recently violated the National Road Funds Act by unilaterally diverting 24.8
Million United State Dollars from the road without the approval of the National legislature.
According to Kanneh, Tweah’s alleged involvement in another two million financial saga at Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services, LISGIS, and the current Road funds, are clear indications that the finance minister is allegedly the most corrupt finance minister Liberia has had since the country’s independence in 1847.
Recently, a member of the board of the National Road Funds (NRF) who preferred not to name, intimated that Finance Minister Samuel D. Tweah was in the wrong to have diverted over US$20 million intended to have been deposited in the escrow account of the National Road Funds.
This statement supports claims by Mr. Kanneh and his group who added that members of the board of the National Road Funds at the time included Transport Minister Samuel Wlue, former Commerce Minister Wilson Tarpeh, Internal Affairs Minister Varney Sirleaf, former Public Works Minister, the late Mabutu Nyenpan and Tweah himself, acted wrongly to have agreed with Minister Tweah to approve funds that were not deposited in the road funds account; and that Tweah acted in bad faith when he asked Board Members to approve the funds which were never in the Escrow account.
The spokesman of the civil society organization said Minister Tweah’s action is “barbaric and violates section 2.1 of the National Road funds act.”
He indicated that since the Finance Minister took over in 2018, his name has been synonymous with scandals after scandal; and therefore insists that their protest is intended to mount pressure on the Liberian President George Weah to not dismiss the minister but arrest and prosecute him.
Finance Minister Samuel Tweah has insisted he acted within the confined of the law to use the funds for salaries.
According to him, he sought the approval of the board of the NRF, partners, and the national legislature.
Such restrictions “risk generating more tension” and “provoke possible violent interventions by the forces of order, accompanied by a disproportionate use of force and the possible use of firearms.