PROFILE: Meet Liberia’s Comptroller General; Atty. Janga Augustus Kowo the Man with Passion, Making the Difference
As our monthly regular slot, this week we brings to the browsing public the profile of Liberia’s Comptroller General, his contributions over the years towards the growth and development of Liberia’s broken economy, and his responsibility at the Ministry of Finance, Development and Planning (MFDP).
Born December 18, 1974, ‘Janga’ as he is affectionately call previously served as Secretary General of Liberia’s popular opposition political party, now the ruling party, Congress for Democratic Change (CDC), he was elected to the position as ‘SG’ in January 2015, is a political activist and trained financial manager.
Prior to his ascendancy as Secretary General of the CDC, the soft-spoken political activist served as Chief Financial officer of the General Auditing Commission of Liberia from 2007 to 2012, before then he worked at the Liberia Post war Truth and Reconciliation Commission as Deputy Coordinator for Montserrado County.
He is also a veteran Student Leader and activist serving as President of the Liberia National Student Union LINSU from 2004 to 2007
Atty. Janga A. Kowo is a seasoned public finance and accounting professional with progressive experience in Public Finance, Accounting, and Auditing spanning more than two decades, according to information gathered, based on his experience in Public Sector Accounting and Public Financial Management he was named as the Country’s Comptroller and Accountant General of the Republic of Liberia by President George Manneh Weah.
His success story drew from the background of his quest to champion the reform that led to the establishment of the Comptroller and Accountant General’s Department of the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning under the Donor Supported Public Financial Management Reforms Initiatives of the Government of Liberia.
Atty. Kowo has worked in several capacities in Public Financial Management in Liberia. He served as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Reformed General Auditing Commission (GAC) of Liberia, where his role included risk management, planning, budgeting, accounting, and financial reporting and audit support services among others. Under the direct supervision of the European Union recruited former Auditor General of Liberia, Atty. Janga A. Kowo led the Reorganization Team of the New General Auditing Commission of Liberia. In this role, he spearheaded the overall management of the first postwar recruitment and restructuring efforts of Liberia’s supreme audit institution.
He also served as a Financial Reporting Consultant of the World Bank Funded State-owned Enterprise (SOE) Unit where he worked to ensure that state-owned enterprises in Liberia follow public financial Management regulations and are also accountable to the Liberian people through the budget process.
The country’s Comptroller and Accountant General started his professional career at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning in the mid-1990s. He served in several capacities at the former Ministry of Finance rising from a cadet to the position of Senior Supervisor in the Motor Vehicle Division, where he was responsible for supervising the collection of motor vehicle registration taxes for the then Department of Revenues at the erstwhile Ministry of Finance, Liberia.
The Comptroller and Accountant General have also contributed to the democratic development of Liberia through the administration of Transitional justice at the country’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). At the TRC, Atty. Kowo served as the Deputy Coordinator for Montserrado County spearheading the collection and documentation of statements and records about the country’s civil conflict.
Atty. Janga A. Kowo also has a rich background in student activism and politics. He is former President of the Liberia National Student Union (LINSU) and organized the first successful post-war congress of the National Student Movement.
Following the election victory, he served as Secretary to the Joint Presidential Transition Team (JPTT) of the Outgoing President and the Incoming President. The JPTT successfully coordinated the peaceful transition of power from the old regime of Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to the new regime of H.E President George Manneh Weah.
Academically, Atty. Janga A. Kowo holds a Bachelor of Law (LLB) Degree from the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law, University of Liberia, and MBA from the Maharishi University of Management (MUM) in Iowa, the United States in 2010, and a BBA with an emphasis in Accounting and Management from the University of Liberia in 2006.
He also holds a certificate in Public Financial Management from Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, along with several other certifications and professional training from the United Nations Institute of Training and Research (UNITAR), the African Development Institute (ADI), and the West Africa Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM).
Some Liberians who spoke to the GNN prior to this publication poured praises on the Country’s Comptroller General for recently exposing corruption at the Ministry of Finance, Development and Planning (MFDP) during a news conference early this month confirmed a reported financial syndicate in the millions which he noted that has been around for years.
Atty. Kowo during the news conference also disclosed that his ministry has uncovered missing millions discoveries begin evidently clear following a vagarious monitoring policy adopted by this office on various government of Liberia accounts currently at commercial Banks across the country.
The astute financial management expert explained that several persons from the department of financial management and compliance are now being in rounded up for investigation by the National Security Agency.
Janga Kowo stated that Minister Samuel Tweah has been duly informed with ongoing investigation in order to established the extend of the syndicate which robed the government of Liberia out of millions in revenue, already those involved in this syndicate are been placed behind bars. The busted of the financial syndicate was through the professional ingenuity of Atty. Kowo.
Atty. Kowo is a family man and is married to Mrs. Jargbe Roseline Nagbe Kowo, the Executive Director of the Public Procurement and Concession Commission (PPCC).