Pres. Boakai Meets Asset Recovery Taskforce -Implores them To Ensure Accountability

MONROVIA: President Joseph N. Boakai in apparent reaction to critics of his asset recovery policy, says everyone who takes government job under his administration will have to report on the basis of the work done in office quarterly including himself, stating that the government will set monitoring devices in offices that have to report on a quarterly basis on the work done in every office. The president also said anyone who worked with the Government of Liberia will be made to account for stewardship and instructed the Asset and Property Recovery Committee to resist anyone telling them that retrieval of government property is a witch-hunt.

“Nobody tells you that you are witch-hunting. When you work for the government or any institution, you have to account for your work. It is not a witch-hunt when they ask you to account. It is accountability,” President Boakai said.

President Boakai made the remarks last week when he met with the Assets and Government Property Recovery Committee in Monrovia.

. “Even in the book that we believe, when you are given the five or 1000 dollars, the pastor would come back to ask you to account. And so that is the job you have to do, the job all of you have to do. Today you are going to all the offices to take account of what all is looted from there,” the Unity Party Political leader, President Boakai charged the Edwin Kla Martin led team.

He said it is becoming a tradition that every time a new Government comes to power it will have to look for money to purchase government properties such as vehicles and electronic gadgets including computers and furniture that were already procured by the previous government.

“You mean every time there is a new government, then you are looking for money for offices? Where are we going to get the money from? We just came from paying those people on the electricity bill we have,” he said, noting that the resources are not there for that.

“Everyone that comes to a government job,” President Boakai said, “feels that everything that is in the office is for them personally,” indicating that perhaps this is one of the reasons why the desire for people who want a government job is high.

“This time you take a government job, you will have to account. You will set a monitoring device that has to report on a quarterly basis on the work you do, including myself,” he vowed, saying, “I tell people from the time I took office that I have not received one dime from the government or maybe for electricity.”

He pointed out that today, everybody who was in government claimed to be rich but they cannot tell how they get the riches, asserting how he has said he is going to put one big billboard up with posts of the seven sins of the world by Mohammed, which he stated are, “Moral without work, religion without sacrifice, commerce without morality, then you talk about politics without principles.”

President Boakai observes that everybody wants to bad mouth people before they can get a job, stating that is not the way it is going to be. “When we do the right thing, God will bless this country.

The President therefore appealed to all Liberians to do what is right so that the people will enjoy this country, which he promised, “will be built”.

The President who delivered his ‘Charge of order’ to the Asset Recovery Taskforce and promised his unwavering support to the Assets  Recovery and Property Retrieval exercise admonished the team to be steadfast and uncompromising in the discharge of their duty in the interest of the country.

 I’m not afraid of whatever

Since the assets recovery and property retrieval policy was announced, there has been massive criticisms, and threats of violence, especially from stalwarts of the main opposition party, the Coalition for Democratic Change the CDC.

The Secretary General of the CDC, Jefferson Koijee stated his party’s position on  asset recovery policy of government when he said the Coalition for Democratic Change has instructed that any attempt for Mr. Boakai to violate the Constitution will be met with stiff resistance,” pointing to the asset recovery policy as one of such violations that his party will resist.

“The CDC sees this as total nonsense and none of its officials can submit to it.  Tell Mr. Boakai, we will take it to his door stairs. He will be greeted by his door stairs. And let Mr. Boakai know that not even a chicken of the CDC can submit to that reckless arrangement,” Koijee defiantly exclaimed.

He promised that the CDC will give the government what this country requires, stating, “We openly defy you, even with boldface, we say back to you, that what you term asset recovery is a reckless arrangement.

“These mickey-mouse characters you place over there – let them be informed that they fall short of everything that has to do with seriousness. Not even a chicken of the CDC will give it a courtesy,” he emphasized.

Kiojee reiterated that President Boakai should not ask for something that the government cannot contain so early, and pointed out, “We can tell you we will not fall short to give you what you requested”   According to Mr. Koijee, “We don’t make words, we come here to tell you that the Liberian people has given you a piece of job to do. Focus on that job.”

But during the meeting with the Asset Recovery and Property Retrieval Task Force, President Boakai   said, “And for me, whatever you hear, I am not afraid to do what is right.  We live for and are committed to a conviction that we can build this country; so that we can have the best country to preserve”

The President Boakai further said, “We have the intelligence, we have the youth that have been endowed, we have our men and women who are capable and highly capable; they need to be given a chance. We have some others in the streets there who are given all kinds of names, they are children of this country and we should give them a chance.

To this end he told the taskforce, “I don’t know most of you and that  is not the point, the point is we are all Liberians  and  we all want to say what a good country; and so every assignment you have will give you the opportunity to build that good country envisioned. You may have friendships or relationships that will not help this country unless people are committed to building the country.

“Look around. We have worked for years; people that work for just five, six years have become millionaires. What is the justification?  You think this country was just made for you? What happened to all the children in the streets who are not going to school? What happened to people who do not have opportunities in medical facilities?  What happens to the elders in those villages?  They are the ones you are to be working for,” he implored the taskforce, stating that if Liberia must be built, it must be Liberians.

Liberians must build Liberia

“I will like to say to all of us Liberians as I always say, that Liberians have the responsibility to build their country. We want a good country; we want to see good things happen, but we don’t want to take the steps that will make the good things happen,” the Liberian leader intoned.

He stressed that good things cannot happen when we want to be above the law but yet we want a good country.  “By the time we see those things happening in other countries, for instance Rwanda, we always look down on how many Liberians that have their children in Rwanda.”

Alluding to the fact that the success of Rwanda did not happen in a vacuum, President Boakai noted, “You all know what Rwanda went through; it has to take commitment, it takes discipline and it takes love for the country. And I am always sure that most of the countries we desire to go around here don’t have the opportunity we have here.”

He was quick to state that Liberia’s problem is that Liberians are not committed to building a good country. “We want a good country but wouldn’t work for the good country. I just came from the Cote d’Ivoire, an African country just like ours, but much younger; Ghana and everything we have here is even much more than in those countries” gave a comparative of the countries around us, but added that these countries are what they are because of their commitment to build their country.

He noted that God has given Liberia another opportunity to make a difference stating that no matter what is heard on the on social media, “you know what this country has been going through.”

He said not everybody will leave this country, and that even those who have gone away from this country want to come back. “That is the responsibility for those living here as well as those who are outside and want to come back, which is to make a good country.”

President Boakai, in his extemporaneous remarks to the Asset Recovery and Property Retrieval Taskforce, noticed that a lot of people are gravitating to government jobs, which he noted is not the solution to fixing the country.

The solution, he mentioned, was building a good nation with good opportunities to bring investors and even Liberians.  “That is why the last time I said come this July, we are going to identify Liberians who have, in the last five years, got into business and survive in contributing to the building of the nation.

Responding to the Liberia Chief Executive, the Chairman of the Taskforce, Cllr. Edwin Kla Martin promised to execute their mandate without fear or favor.

He assured the President that no one will be wrongfully accused and that they intend to ensure due diligence is followed meticulously. They thanked President Boakai for their selection and promised their utmost best to achieve the goals as outlined in Executive Order # 126.

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