Liberia: ‘Bring Back Our Money’ Campaigners Gathering In Monrovia To Petition International Community
Monrovia – Protesters demanding the Liberian government to give account of L$16 billion that have been reported missing have started gathering in Monrovia to present three separate petitions to the diplomatic community.
Report by Alpha Daffae Senkpeni, [email protected]
Hundreds of protesters are already standing in front of the United States Embassy in the diplomatic enclave of Mamba Point while others gather in other parts of the city.
The crowd is swelling by the hour, as protesters chats: Bring Back Our Money!! Rogue, Rogue!!
They are expected to join other protesters later today to present petitions to the United States government through the embassy near Monrovia, the European Union and the United Nations.
The protesters are upbeat and say by mid-day they will start presenting their petitions beginning with the US Embassy.
The petitioners are aiming to see the government’s major foreign partners exert pressure on the government of President George Weah to give account for the missing billions.
There are light showers and the weather looks cloudy, but the protesters insist they will stay put even if it rains.
“I don’t think the rain will disrupt our assembly and people have the exuberance to show up today and we will remain here even if it rains,” one protester said.
Amos Tweh, former youth wing chair of the former ruling Unity Party who joined the protest, says the government must give account for the missing billions.
“We have assembled peacefully to demand our missing mystery because we have several Liberians who are living on one dollar a day due to their inability to get food to eat,” Tweh said.
“This country citizens are improvised – they are poor, and their leaders must seek to ensure that their people are lifted from the shackles of poverty and hardship.”
Armah Kadii, who traveled from Grand Cape Mount County to join the protest, says he is perplexed by the contradicting information coming from the government.
“What brought us on the street today is that the Information Minister said there was missing money and the Finance Minister said there’s no missing money, so it will be good for us to make the public to know because the people are giving contrary statements,” he said.
“If [President] George Weah does not give a positive statement on the missing money, we will ask President Weah to resign peacefully because the Information Minister is the official spokesperson of the government, so he is giving the right statement.”
Boakai Jalibah has used social media in recent days to push the Bring Back Our Money campaign. He says they are using the protest to ask “valid questions” about the missing money and they are not “asking for human hearts”.
“There will be subsequent protests actions and our purpose is to be able to highlight to the world that in the period of this six months of this government, we see officials of the government owning prime properties in prime parts of the city,” he said.
Reporter Willie N. Tokpah Contributed to this report