SEAT Warns Detractors Against Badmouthing Tweah – Says the Finance Minister’s Hands Are Clean in US$25m Saga
Apparently unable to find key members of the year-old government implicated in the L$16 billion uproar, many other conspiracy theorists are pulling new strings in the hope that the Weah administration would, one way of the other, not go free from blame. Thus, the debate of over the money saga is shifting to circumstances surrounding the appropriation of the US$25 million government authorized to mop up excess Liberian banknotes from the market and to tame the vexing inflation in the economy. Specifically targeted and clawed to the spotlight by the detractors is Finance Minister Samuel Tweah, head of the Government’s Technical Economic Management Team, though the team includes many other prominent members of Government. Some pundits contend that the singling out of Tweah is largely a way of engineering the implication of the entire government since the Finance Minister is perceived as a top ideologue and game-changer in the Weah Government. Amid the high suspicion on Tweah’s role in the money saga, a group calling itself South East Alliance for Transformation (SEAT) is giving its full backing to Tweah’s innocence and warning detractors to stop their mischief against him. The Analyst reports.
The South Eastern Alliance for transformation (SEAT), expresses its appreciation to Government of Liberia for publicly availing the two Independent reports covering the investigations into alleged missing 16bn Liberian Dollars. SEAT believes that the government of Liberia’s decision to invite an independent investigation demonstrates its respect for democratic good governance including transparency and accountability.
SEAT has thoroughly read the two reports and welcome the recommendations from the investigators which on large accounts recommend more risks mitigations and management measures at the Central Bank of Liberia. Concurring with the reports, SEAT believes the investigations and findings into the alleged missing 16bn is independent of the direct mop up exercise recommended by the Technical Economic Management Team (TEMT) to stabilize the exchange rate by removing excess Liberian dollars outside the banks.
SEAT clearly understands the role of the TEMT as policy making body that provided the strategies for the mop-up opposed to directly implementing the mop-up exercise as is been widely viewed and circulated on social media with the evil intent of incriminating, Honorable Samuel D. Tweah, Jr. Minister of Finance and Development Planning. SEAT further research into the TEMT structure finds the followings;
- The TEMT is intergovernmental working group which comprises of members from the Ministries of Finance and Development Planning, Commerce & Industry, Justice, States for Presidential Affairs, and the Liberian Revenue Authority. MFDP chairs the TEMT, but decisions for policy adoption and implementation are reached based on shared understanding and consensus.
- The TEMT dedicated implementation of policies to member’s institutions, leveraging on the existing operational structures of the agencies best suited for implementation. In the case of the direct mop-up, the CBL through its Banking Department was solely charged with implementation, and not members of the TEMT as is been widely and falsely circulated
- Decision for adopting the direct mop –up against the traditional FX Auctioning was reached based on the advice from the CBL’s Banking Department after an elaborate presentation to members of the TEMT. Report from CBL shows that prior to the Mop up exercise, the exchange rate between the $USD and$LD stood at 166 to 1USD, whereas after the monetary invention the LD appreciated to $LD 155 to 1USD, thereby justifying the effectiveness of the direct mop up or repurchasing.
In view of these findings, SEAT finds it utterly disturbing calls by some Liberians especially social media bloggers for the arrest and incrimination of Hon. Samuel D. Tweah, Jr. Chair of TEMT merely on account of him chairing the TEMT. SEAT is therefore calling on all peace loving Liberians to accept the outcome of the report and stop shifting blames on particular individuals as is been widely done on social media including Facebook. ‘Let it be known that at no point in the report where it is mentioned that Finance and Development Planning Minister, Samuel D. Tweah unilaterally authorized the mopping up of Liberian dollars through the infusion of $USD on the market” Edward Nagbe, the chief of elders of SEAT noted.
SEAT is a pro-democracy and development group that seeks to galvanize development by working with both the government of Liberia and the private sector to ensure development and economic growth take place throughout the country.