Liberia: Lawmakers Receive US$5K Each for Signing Printing of L$4 Billion Resolution
Monrovia – Unimpeachable sources have told FrontPageAfrica that each lawmaker, who signed the resolution for the printing of new banknotes, is set to receive US$5,000 as lobby fees.
With over 60 representatives already signed the document that gives the Executive through the Central Bank of Liberia the mandate to mint additional L$4 billion, over US$300,000 of tax payers money will be ditch out to them as signature fees.
This means members of the House are technically being paid for making laws, a Constitutional duty already bestowed upon them by their respective constituents.
Article 34 C of the Liberian Constitution gives the Legislature the “express authority” to approve the printing of new banknotes.
At least 13 of the 73 reps declined to sign the resolution, a Legislative source told FPA on Friday, December 27. It is unclear whether those who voted against the decision will also receive the U$5,000.
Sources say Representatives Mariamu Fofana of Lofa County, Samuel Enders of Montserrado County and George Boley of Grand Gedeh County have already received their checks.
One lawmaker, who asked not to be named, said the money was taken from the House of Representatives’ annual budget and used as leverage against them to sign the resolution.
“This money is not from the Executive budget; it is our own money. But the Executive decided to hold on to our just benefits until the resolution was signed,” the lawmaker said.
“It was intended to hold us under duress until the resolution was signed.”
The lawmaker added that the Executive has been unable to spend outside of its budget to pay the lawmakers into signing the document because the International Monetary Fund has been very observant of its fiscal activities and would have frown on any questionable out-of-budget spending.
Because of this, the lawmaker said, the Executive subtly opted to use money captured in the budget of the House to constrain the lawmakers into signing the resolution.
News of the representatives receiving money for the signing of the “new money” resolution comes after several of them had declined to confirm or deny reports that each of the signatories to the resolution received a signature fee of US$5,000.
Late last week, the CBL issued a statement, assuring the public and its international partners that, following the approval by the Legislature authorizing the Bank to print L$4.0 billion Liberian dollars.
The Bank said this is intended to ease the liquidity situation in the country, the procurement process relating to the printing, shipment and delivery of the money will be implemented in conformity with transparent, accountable and credible procedures as well as in strict adherence to national laws, internal regulations and acceptable professional