Following the admittance of the Central Bank of Liberia, Forestry Development Authority and the Ministry of Finance about the collection of US$13.6 million land rental fees, Lofa County lawmaker has claimed that US$50,000 was paid to each Superintendent of the 15 counties.
Representative Moses Kollie disclosed that the affected communities did not benefit from the money.
Representative Kollie, a campaigner of the whereabouts of the US$13.6 million land rental fees made the disclosure Thursday at the Capitol.
Speaking to Legislative reporters, Representative Kollie said sensitive information gathered by him has revealed that the amount was received by Superintendents of the 15 counties, some of whom he said are no more in government.
He indicated that the US$50,000 unilaterally withdrawn by former Montserrado County Superintendent Grace Kpaan came from the money in question although the Finance Ministry had denied that a dime was taken from the money.
"Mind you there are more punishments to come because the same US$50,000 that brought Madam Grace Kpaan into trouble, it is my understanding that every county received this money which is a portion of the US$13.6 million confirmed by the Ministry of Finance," Representative Kollie indicated.
He said the issue would be brought to the attention of the House of Representatives for investigation.
Rep. Kollie said he will ensure that every superintendent whether present or former be made to provide explanation on the usage of the money.
Appearing before the plenary of the House of Representatives recently, Deputy Finance Minister for Revenue James Kollie confirmed that the amount of US$13.6 million has been collected as land rental fees.
Dr. Kollie said the money was land rental fees for various communities as recommended in the 2006 Forestry Reform Law, but said the money has not been paid to beneficiary communities.
The Deputy Finance Minister twisted his tongue later when he told the Representatives that the Ministry was not sure whether the money has been deposited in an account at the Central Bank of Liberia.
The Forestry Reform law states that in the land rental fees, each affected counties are entitled to a portion. According to the law, 30 percent benefit goes to affected communities within these counties, while the rest goes in government's coffer as general revenue.