The Reform Coordination Unit at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning on Wednesday presented copies of the Amendment and Restatement of the Public Financial Management Act of 2009 to five ministries and one agency of government at the Ministerial Complex in Congo Town. The Amendment and Restatement Act was passed into law in October 2019. The institutions of government included the Ministries of Commerce, Labor, Education, Gender, Agriculture and the Civil Service Agency.
According to a press release from the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, while speaking on behalf of Finance and Development Planning Minister, the Coordinator of the Reform Coordination Unit, Dr. P. Emmanuel Munyeneh informed participants including Deputy Ministers and Directors that it was an honor to share copies of the Act with them. He said that cognizant of the role reform plays in transforming societies, the government of Liberia decided to set up the Public Financial Management to coordinate and sequence reforms activities in the country.
The release said that the Act governs all matters related to the management of public finances of the Republic of Liberia. It lays out fundamental procedures for the preparation, adoption, execution and final accounts of the national budget. It also focuses on internal control, accounting and auditing of public finances including assets, debt managements as well as government guarantees. One of the critical amendments include the responsibility of government officials to timely, comprehensively and accurately report on public funds.
“In short, this Amended and Restatement of the Public Financial Management Act of 2009 which was signed into law in October, 2019 by the national legislature and approved by H.E. Dr. George Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia is the light house or better still the Holy Grail for an effective management and utilization of public finances in the Republic”, Dr. Munyeneh noted.
“We at the RCU crave that you reference this Act in all things appertaining to public finances, whether it is procurement, budgetary preparation, request for allotment and quarterly financial reporting. We are certainly hopeful that this Act will guide you toward the light of transparency, trust and integrity in the dispensation of public resources”, the Coordinator asserted.
Dr. Munyeneh noted that as part of its mandate, the RCU will shortly conduct a state of governance reform across all ministries and agencies. The intent will be to establish whether ministries and agencies are efficient in the delivery of services to the Liberian people.
The RCU with support from donor partners will in the coming months conduct internal assessments of key international World Bank and African Development Bank indicators to include the Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability Performance Assessment Report, the Country Policy and Institutional Assessment, the Millennium Challenge Corporation and other reports. The intent will focus on improving the country’s overall scores and rankings which are tied to International Development Assistance, improving business and financial services and improving the standard of living of ordinary citizens.
Receiving copies of the Act, deputy ministers and directors thanked the Hon. Samuel D. Tweah and the President of Liberia for approving the Act. They pledged their commitments to reference the Act at all times when making public financial management decisions in their individual entities.