Liberia: CSO seeks 80 million COVID Special Drawing Rights funding to Liberia, Calls on Finance Minister, Central Bank Governor to Give Accounts

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MONROVIA –  Public Health Initiative Liberia (PHIL) through its Executive Director Joyce Kilikpo has called on Liberia’s Finance Minister Samuel Tweah and Central Bank Governor J. Aloysius Tarlue to give account of Liberia’s portion of the initial US$80 million received from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Special Drawing Rights (SDR) funding to Liberia.

As part of PHIL aims into advocacy, the group over the weekend through its Executive Director hosted a one-day advocacy meeting to unveil what Liberia received from the International IMF through its Special drawing rights Fund.

Madam Kilikpo disclosed to FrontPage Africa with backing from the IMF – November 24, 2021: PRESS RELEASE NO. 21/347, which quoted that on “August 23, 2021, Liberia received SDR247.7 million (US$345.3 million) in the context of the general SDR allocation to IMF’s membership.

According to Ms. Kilikpo, in April of this year, “we were credibly informed that Liberia has received US$80 Million of the Funds earmarked Recipient of SDR on behalf of Liberia are as published by the IMF and was signed by Minister Samuel Tweah, Jr. and Gov. Jorlue Aloysius Tarlue on behalf of Liberia with an aim to boost CBL Reserve, Support Economic Growth, strengthen the fight Against Covid-19 through Vaccines.

“We have observed that there has been limited or no stakeholders engagement on the proper and transparent use of the SDR and consequent accountability have been left solely to the discretion of the Central Bank and the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning with no involvement and dialogue with other key players within civil society,” PHIL Executive Director said.

She further said that the business community, the media and Legislature are all at risk with the lack of adequate information about the money and fear mismanagement of having the money used for other purposes that may not be in the interest of the state.

“As CSO actors, we will campaign and pressure the government to make the best use of SDRs in public investments (such as in social protection, health, education and others) to support the response to the pandemic and reduce inequalities for a more equal and sustainable recovery,” Madam Kilikpo added.

The Special Drawing Rights (SDR) were originally introduced in 1969 by the IMF and is worth $650 billion as the IMF’s largest allocation since 1945 (larger than the Marshall Plan in today’s money), as a way of IMF supplementing fund member countries foreign exchange reserves, allowing members to reduce their reliance on more expensive domestic or external debt for building reserves and as well to secure a global green, inclusive COVID-19 recovery (UNDP 2020).

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