LIBERIA: Finance Minister To Present Budget Performance Report To House February 4

The Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel Tweah, has been invited by the House of Representatives to appear before full plenary on Tuesday, February 4, to present a comprehensive budget performance report with all relevant documents.

Plenary decision is a result of a communication from Montserrado County District #16 representative, Dixon Seboe, on Tuesday, stating that at this time of the year, recast and supplementary budget should be discussed and effected based on a comprehensive budget performance report, adding that the budget is an instrument on which the country runs and the needs of the people are met through the execution of the budget.

Speaking further Seboe said, a comprehensive report on the performance of the budget is needed for decision so as to do what is referred to as recast budget, if the budget is not performing or there’s a need for a supplementary budget.

He indicated that since the budget is a “live” instrument, the legislature must know the performance of the budget, adding that a quarterly and revenue reports and monthly expenditure need to be made that will help Liberians to see where the budget is at any point in time.

Seboe said during the last fiscal year, what is required by law that is a recast or supplementary budget was not discuss, stating that the House must take the lead in preventing such recurrence.

“The budget comes from the Executive as a draft budget, we have the constitutional right to do a final copy of the budget and do all necessary appropriations. The budget belongs to the legislature so if the budget does not perform and we have to do reallocation the legislature has the authority to do such and if there is supplementary budget and there is excess to put in some other areas, that can only be done by the legislature. That is why it is important we raise that issue now to get the clear understanding”, he said.

He observed that “where we are as a country needs to be clear on our ability to raise revenue because that is the way forward in expenditure issues.”

Discussing the communication in plenary, Lofa County District #1 representative, Francis Nyumalin, said the legislature has gone two quarters and they are yet to have a report from the Ministry of Finance on the performance of the budget stressing that members of the 54th legislature do not have a copy of the budget approved by President George Weah.

Meanwhile, the plenary of the House of Representatives has invited the Minister of Health and the head of the National Public Health Institute of Liberia for discussions on steps that are being taken to handle any outbreak that may spark in the country considering the movement of people geographically.

Plenary decision is as a result of a communication from Montserrado County District #16 Representative, Dixon Seboe. stating that based on information via the media concerning the Coronavirus that has recently came to light in China, there is an urgent need for the country to put measures in place for the safety of the population.

He furthered stressed that the statistics being presented relating to the amount of cases discovered and the corresponding deaths in a short period is so alarming and frightening.

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