By Morrison O.G. Sayon
The Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) has released its first Assets Declaration Verification report verifying the assets disclosures of 63 officials from seven government institutions.
Addressing a major news conference yesterday in Monrovia, LACC boss, Frances Johnson-Allison said the report covers the Ministries of Finance, Public Works, Health & Social Welfare, Internal Affairs, National Port Authority (NPA), Liberia Maritime Authority, and the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission.
In the report, Madam Allison disclosed that the findings are divided in five categories that include, officials whose AD (Assets Declaration) process was completed and for whom the LACC has joined issues; officials who deliberately decided not to cooperate with the Commission’s team despite notices to them to appear before it; officials who sent in written excuses based on individual peculiar circumstances; officials whose AD process could not be completed within the time frame due to outstanding issues still unresolved as at the time of the report and officials whose AD were verified and certified as truthfully declared.
In the findings, LACC booked Madam Oretha Zeon, Operation Manager of the port of Buchanan for intentional and material misrepresentation and unexplained wealth accumulation. The commission booked NPA boss, Matilda Parker for intentional misrepresentation, intentional and material misrepresentation and unexplained wealth accumulation, Charles Gono of the Liberia Maritime Authority for unexplained wealth accumulation and Blayon Brown Sarlee, Comptroller at the Ministry of Internal Affairs. LACC said officials who deliberately refused to cooperate with the Commission’s team include, Deputy Financial Minister, Sabastian Muah, Christian G. Herbert Deputy Minister of Public Works, Etweda Cooper Superintendent of Grand Bassa County, among others.
LACC said whose AD process could not be completed within the reporting time frame due to outstanding issues yet to be resolved according to Madam Allison include, Sam Foday Brown, Superintendent of Bomi County, Samuel Kofi Woods, Minister of Public Works, Stephen, Yekeson Deputy Minister of Public Works, Varney Sirleaf Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs, Blamo Nelson, former Minister of Internal Affairs, Vivian Cherue, Deputy Minister of Health among others.
Chairman Allison said officials who sent in written excuses on each individual peculiar circumstance include, Ranney B. Jackson, Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs; Neneh Kroyahn Financial manager, Maritime Authority and Amara B. Konneh, Minister of Finance.
Among other things, the LACC boss said officials whose AD were verified and certified as truthfully declared include, Z. Adonie Greaves, Asst. Supt. For Development, Binyan Kessely, Commissioner Maritime Authority, Desire S. Satia Financial Director, Maritime Authority; Alexander Mitchell, Procurement Manager, LiMA; Christiana K. Pawlay, Comptroller NPA, among others.
The LACC boss said the Assets Declaration exercise is one of the most important tools in the fight against corruption. Madam Allison said the LACC takes this aspect of its mandate very seriously and will continue to superintend the process of collection, storage, administration and verification.
She said the verification process is necessary followed by sanctions for persons who choose to misinform the LACC and lied under oath and for those caught with unexplained wealth.
Meanwhile, LACC said individuals who lied under oath after acquiring unexplained wealth and made intentional and material misrepresentation will be prosecuted for perjuries. Madam Allison said the Commission has the right to either prosecute them or complain them to their bosses to be turned over for prosecution.