Liberia: Mano River Union Youth Parliament Alarms Over ‘Missing’ US$23K Cheque at Ministry of Finance
Monrovia – The Liberia’s parliament of the Mano River Union Youth has alarmed that its second budgetary allotment in the tune of US$23,000 cheque has gone missing at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP).
According to the group, the missing cheque situation follows months of “serious undue bureaucracy and complications” in the application process.
The group claimed that the check was released by the Comptroller General of the Ministry of Finance three months ago and was forwarded to the office of the Deputy Minister of Finance for Fiscal Affairs, Samora Wolokollie to affix his signature before issuance.
According to the group, Deputy Minister Wolokollie has since signed the cheque but refused to release it.
When contacted, Mr. Wolokollie could not admit or deny the Mano River Union Youth Parliament’s claims. He told FrontPage Africa that he was too busy with the budget hearing at the Legislature to respond to every allegation.
Speaking to reporters, the Speaker of the Mano River Union Youth Parliament, Liberia’s Chapter, Mohammed A. Massaley lamented that the refusal of the MFDP to disburse the check is impeding the smooth operations of the organization.
“Our cheque has gone missing somewhere and this is going to stall the progress of over 30 parliamentarians and 10 staff who offer youth development services to over a million young people across the 15 counties,” Mr. Massaley stated.
“We will not be able to implement our programs. Recently, our partners came from Sweden and they wanted to have a meeting with us in our office but that was impossible. We were thrown. This is bad. These are sad times for us in Liberia.”
Speaking further, he narrated that the Government of Liberia has not been fully supporting the Parliament. He noted the government drastically cut down the group’s budget from US$90,000 in the previous budget year to US$28,000 for Fiscal Year 2018/2019.
Out of the US$28,000, Massalley indicated that only US$5,000 the group received back in October 2018.
The Government, he added, has deliberately refused to disburse the remaining US$23,000 despite all effort exerted by his leadership to engage officials of the Ministry of Finance including the Minister Samuel Tweah and his deputy, Mr. Wolokollie.
He explained that sometimes they are met with insults and intimidation by Minister Tweah and Deputy Minister Wolokollie.
He said: “All effort to reach them has failed. We have only been met with insults and this is a complete disrespect to the Mano River Union Youth Parliament. My leadership took a delegation to meet the Minister of Finance to tell him about the situation but we were not allowed to meet him. When I phoned him, I can’t say the word that he said on the radio. Honestly, it is so disappointing. This is irresponsible leadership at the level of the Ministry of Finance. The minister of Finance is even aware.” He continued: “With all the news of missing cheques and people misappropriating money, it is even worrisome. Our cheque has gone missing somewhere and this is going to stall the progress of over 30 parliamentarians and 10 staff who offer youth development services to over a million young people across the 15 counties.”