Liberia: Senate Imposes US$0.30 Tax on Each Gallon of Petroleum Product; Approves FY2019/2020 Recast Budget at US$518M

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In the resolution, the Senate called for the revision of existing laws establishing or relating to the Liberia Maritime Authority (LMA) and the Liberia Telecommunication Authority (LTA) to ensure all revenues from these entities are collected and flow directly into the consolidated account at the Central Bank of Liberia.

Capitol Hill, Monrovia – The Liberian Senate has passed the hotly debated recast budget for Fiscal Year 2019/2020 at US$518 million with an imposition of US$.30 on a gallon of all petroleum products.


Report by Gerald C. Koinyeneh, [email protected]


The Senate took the decision through a resolution signed by the majority of its members in plenary.

In the resolution, the Senate called for the revision of existing laws establishing or relating to the Liberia Maritime Authority (LMA) and the Liberia Telecommunication Authority (LTA) to ensure all revenues from these entities are collected and flow directly into the consolidated account at the Central Bank of Liberia.

In order to improve transparency and effectiveness in the public management system, the Senate, in the resolution mandated the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP) to ensure that all advanced reporting agencies revert to using the government’s Integrated Financial Management System (IFMS) for all purchases, as well as to end the piloted cash advanced program.

The MFDP was also requested to ensure the weekly publishing of reconciled and comprehensive fiscal data to be shared with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) effectively immediately.

In addition, the Senate called for a consideration of US$520 million as the ceiling for FY-2020/2021 national budget.

The FY-2019/2020 recast budget was passed amid allegations that lawmakers received bribe from the Executive to influence their decision.

Montserrado County Senator, Abraham Darius Dillon further added fuel to the debate when he lambasted Senator Albert Chie and some of his colleagues for being “spineless, rotten and useless for not debating the budget before approval.”

Senator Dillon’s comments led Senator George Tengbeh of Lofa County to write the Senate plenary, requesting him to be placed under investigation for “act unbecoming” of a Senator.

Eight Senators have since jumped to Dillon’s defense. In a letter dated June 1, 2020, the Senators stated clearly and emphatically that as far as they are concerned –  and to their certain knowledge of Rule 23 of the Senate standing rules, there is no complaint against Senator Abraham Darius Dillon before the Senate least to mentioned any ongoing investigation as is being speculated in the Public.

“Please correct the very wrong impression that was given the Public regarding this matter,” the Senators urged Pro Temp Chie.

Although the resolution met the required majority for approval, several Senators did not affix their signatures to the documents.

They include Senators Darius Dillon (Montserrado, Liberty Party), Nyonblee Karngar Lawrence (Grand Bassa, Liberty Party), J. Milton Teahjay (Sinoe County), Thomas S. Grupee, (Nimba County, Unity Party), Stephen G.H Zargo, (Lofa, Liberty Party), Sando Johnson (Bomi County, National Patriotic Party), Oscar A. Cooper (Margibi, Independent), Conmany B. Wesseh (River Gee County), Armah Z. Jallah (Gnarpolu County) and Daniel F. Naatehn (Gbarpolu County).

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