Liberia: Health Ministry Replaces Margibi County Health Team following Corruption Exposé


MONROVIA – The Minister of Health, Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah has replaced the Margibi County Health Team that is currently undergoing investigation for their alleged involvement in acts of corruption as exposed by a FrontPageAfrica report.

By Lennart Dodoo, [email protected]

Dr. Sianneh Jackson, Bomi County Health Officer, has been transferred to Margibi, immediately replacing Dr. Augustine Fahnieh.

FrontPageAfrica gathered that the outcome of the investigation would inform the next decision that would be taken on the members of the team who were heard orchestrating how to divert funds meant to facilitate health activities in the county to their personal use in cohort with vendors.

“Those who would be exonerated would be reassigned while those found liable would be forwarded to the LACC,” a Health Ministry source told FrontPageAfrica.

FrontPageAfrica obtained an audio recording in which the Margibi County Health Officer (CHO) Dr. Augustine Nyankun Fannieh and other senior staff of the County Health Team were discussing their involvement in financial corruption surrounding fraudulent billings and collection of kickbacks from vendors.

The leaked audio embroiling the Margibi County Health Team administrators in financial impropriety surfaced at the time the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the Ministry of Health (MOH) Fixed Amount Reimbursement Agreement (FARA) Program is providing annual financial support of US$801,693.00 to the Margibi Health System.  

The FARA program supports the cost of implementing components of the Essential Package of Health Services that support family planning, maternal and child health, and malaria prevention and treatment at 24 health Facilities across Margibi.

In response to the report, the United States Embassy in Monrovia commended FrontPageAfrica for the exposé and expressed concerns over the stealing of American taxpayers’ money intended to support health initiatives in the county.

In a brief statement, the Embassy stated:

The United States Mission to Liberia expresses serious concerns about the report in the February 2, 2023 edition of Frontpage Africa Newspaper regarding the misuse of funds provided by the United States Government to support health care for the people of Margibi County. We have a special responsibility to ensure that money provided by United States taxpayers for the benefit of the people of Liberia, including the people of Margibi, is used for its intended purpose. We commend the investigative journalism that brought this story to light and appreciate the swift action by the Ministry of Health to make immediate changes while investigating the matter. The USAID Mission to Liberia will decide whether to retain Margibi as part of USAID’s government-to-government agreement pending a transparent investigation and associated actions to hold accountable anyone involved in the misuse of any U.S. government funds.