24 January 2018

Liberia: Patel Welcomes President Weah's Stance On Liberian Businesses

The Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia (PATEL) has welcomed and lauded President George Weah's stance on the Liberians-owned businesses in the country.

PATEL is the umbrella organization for the conglomeration of Liberian owned businesses in the country.

National Chairman, Presley Tenwah, in a release said it stands with President Weah in ensuring that Liberians would not be spectators in their own economy.

"The statement by President Weah that we cannot remain spectators in our own economy, my government will prioritize the interest of Liberian owned businesses and offer programs to help them more competitive is the pure language and vision PATEL hopes to achieve," Tenwah said.

Tenwah statement comes a day after president Weah delievered his inaugural speech at the Samuel K. Doe sport complex on Tuesday January 22, 2018, in Paynesville city, outside Monrovia.

Tenwah said as long as the new President has and continue to recognize the efforts of Liberian businesses, it shows that he has a place in his heart for us Liberian businesses.

"It is our hope and prayers that detractors will not sweep away his good plan he has envisage for the Liberian business people because his speech has reawaken the intent and spirit of PATEL," Tenwah noted.

PATEL National Chairman also disclosed that before the inauguration day, the organization wrote President Weah and had meeting with some personalities. During the meeting, they outlined some of the things affecting the growth of Liberian businesses, the statement said.

"This is a plus for us because we have already recommended to President Weah weeks after he was announced winner by the National Elections Commission (NEC) what we expect from the new government within the next six months, especially relating to some constrains Liberian businesses are currently faced with in importing goods through the Freeport of Monrovia," he said.

Mr. Tenwah lastly called on all his members to join him to move the organization forward and reconcile their differences because "the existence of the group has been recognized by the new President."

Also, some member of the business community of Liberia welcomed the decision by President George Weah to implement the liberalization policy in order for Liberians to take control of the economy, rather than to be spectators.

In an interview, the chief executive officer of Uncle Sam's Income Tax and Accounting Service said he believed that Weah's statement was timely, noting "it is time that the Liberian business take charge of the economy."

Fredrick Sam Gibson stressed that the growth of any economy is inspired by the private sector, something he says makes the Liberian leader's statement very timely.

According to him, there is some level of sincerity in George Weah Speech.

Gibson stated that the dual currency has some economic impact on the business sector, something which needs to be looked at by this government.

"I do believe in one currency, especially the local currency. A lot of businesses including the foreigners come here and get the USD and leave the country without developing the country; but if it is only the Liberian currency, they will have control on the amount of money that leave the country through the banking system" He said.

Adding his voice, the President Of Kpaku Plaza, Clarence K. Momolu emphasized the need for the Weah administration to take a bold steps in a way major contracts given to private enterprises or business people, 90 percent should be given to Liberians.

"I believe this would help the economy to grow rather than giving it to foreigners and non-nationals," he said.

"I worked at the Ministry of Finance and Commerce as deputy minister; I have been one of the longest serving directors and I also worked at the Freeport before ; we all know what is going on in those areas," he added.

In his inaugural address on Monday, Pres. Weah promised to implement the liberalization policy, noting that Liberian business will have control over the economy and not be a spectator.

This statement by the Liberian leader has been welcomed by many Liberian particularly those in the business sector even though some are still doubtful whether or not such policy under the Weah administration would be implemented to the fullest.


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