Liberia’s Auditor General Recruitment Red Flag
Monrovia – The recruitment of the next Auditor General of Liberia appears to be starting on the wrong footing in what is likely a violation of the General Commission Act of 2014 by the office of the President. According to Section 2.1.1.
The recruitment process, according to the GAC Act requires that an Independent Selection and Recruitment Process shall be set up by the President for the purpose of identifying suitable candidates for the position of Auditor General and (II) membership of the ad hoc committee shall include the incumbent Auditor or Acting Auditor General, Senior representatives of the Civil Service Commission, Anti-Corruption Commission, the Liberian Institute of certified Public Accountants the Governance Commission and Civil Society in Good Standing. This is done six months prior to the expiration of the tenure of the current Auditor General.
However, the Office of the President announced the appointment of the Ad Hoc Committee on January 22, 2021, less than sixty days to the expiration of the tenure of the current Auditor General, Madam Yusador S. Gaye. The announcement is about four months later than the time required by the GAC Act.
Also, the Executive Mansion announcement says that Cllr. Bernard, the Legal Advisor to the President of Liberia was appointed as the Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee. The Appointment appears to violate the act as there is no mention of the President Legal Advisor on the Ad Hoc Committee.
This is not the first time the Liberian Presidency guff on the recruitment and or appointment of head of integrity institution. On March 5, 2018, the Daily Observer Newspaper reported that President Weah announced the appointment of former Montserrado County Lawmaker Gabriel Nyenkan as the new head of Secretariat of LEITI. The appointment was outside the framework established by the Multi-Stakeholders Steering Group (MSG) of LEITI for the recruitment and appointment of the head of the agency. The President eventually removed Mr. Nyenkan from the position after local and international pushback.
It appears doubtful that the Ad Hoc committee will work within the two months left for the Auditor General tenure to expire given that the recruitment for such an important position usually takes a longer time due to its complexity.
Also, it remains to be seen if President Weah will remove his Legal Advisor from the Ad Hoc Committee to meet the requirement of the law.