Liberia: 'We Stand Ready to Undertake Bigger Reforms'

-- Finance Minister Tweah tells Liberians, launches CAGD

Finance and Development Planning Minister, Samuel Tweah, has called on Liberians to be tolerant, despite the country's microeconomic stability, which the government has achieved within a period of two to three years as growth is expected.

In remarks at the official launch, the Controller and Accountant General Department (CADG), Minister Tweah said when strong economic measures or reforms were taken and that has helped the country and by that this regime stands ready to undertake bigger programs.

The department is intended to bring all Comptrollers and Accountants of Government Ministries, Agencies under the umbrella of the CAGD. It will also facilitate the effective and efficient utilization of financial resources under fiscally sound principles that support the Finance and Development Planning Ministry's strategic plan with emphasis on public service delivery.

According to him, reform takes time depending on the political cycle "so our president thought it wise, prudent, to reform them. So, thanks to President Weah for these development."

Tweah stressed the need for the continuous improvement of the system at the Finance and Development so that there cannot be arbitrary dismissal of comptrollers and accountants.

Earlier on, James Thompson, Director of the Civil Service Agency (CSA) of Liberia, stated from now on comptrollers and accountants of online ministries and agencies will exercise independently in doing their work.

He said transferring of people will not affect their monthly earning or salary as all presidential or political appointees have their respective categories.

Also speaking, Deputy Finance Minister for Fiscal Policy, Samora Wolokollie said the CADG is not an autonomous entity but a former department, which will consolidate the government's accounting under a single reporting program.

Wolokollie said the launch of the CAGD would strengthen the government's domestic revenue mobilization system and improve financial control in public financing.

He said the CAGD is being supported by the World Bank, European Union, African Union, ECOWAS, International Monetary fund, African Development Bank, United States Agency for International Development, Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), respectively. Yusador Gaye, Director General of the General Auditing Commission (GAC) encouraged the CADG to work along with the Commission in an effort to add value to public financial management.

Janga Kowo, head of the Comptroller and Accountant General, recalled how the bureau of the budget, Planning and Economic Affairs Ministry, and Finance Ministry merger to form the MFDP.

He said the Financial Public Management (FPM) is tied to national development, which the government saw the need to consolidate the comptroller and accountant general department.

Kowo then paid tribute to local and international partners like the National Legislature, Ghana's Comptroller and Accountant General Department as well as the World Bank, African Development Bank, IMF, ECOWAS, African Union, USAID, SIDA among others for their support.

On behalf of the National Legislature, Speaker Bhofal Chambers said no law is permanent because based on circumstances, it can change.

"Therefore, public financial management came about with resource management," he said.

He then urged Liberians to learn from two countries: Botswana and Singapore in Asia. These were nations in the past but now they are rich because of the manner and form they have managed their natural resources."

For Foreign Affairs Minister, Dee Maxwell Kemayah, the Comptroller and Accountant General Department has transitioned to the Finance and Development Planning Ministry.

He described same as step in the right direction intended for growth or economic recovery for the development of the country.

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