The Ministry of Finance has with immediate effect dismissed two (2) of its employees from the Department of Revenue for revenue related fraud, a release from the Ministry issued last evening noted.
After thorough investigation, the Ministry said it established that Madam Gbilee Dennis, Senior Collector, and Mr. George Gorlumah, Examiner/Cashier, from the Jorwah Collectorate in Bong County falsified revenue receipts that defrauded Government of US$5,000.
“These employees are no longer in the employ of the Ministry of Finance and anyone doing business with them will be doing so at his or her own risk,” the release said, but did not mention any other action such as prosecution or payback.
“The Ministry of Finance wishes to inform the Liberian public that the public financial system has again come under attack from unscrupulous element within the civil service,” the release continued. “However, as promised, the authorities of the Ministry of Finance will not relent in taking appropriate actions to ensure that such behaviors are fully punished and discouraged.”
The release noted that as misguided elements within the employ of the Ministry of Finance have decided to continue their attempt to defraud Government of much needed revenues, “especially in our rural ports and collectorates, the Ministry has decided to intensify its efforts to seal revenue leakages and strengthen revenue collection.”
False receipts and duplication of other revenue instruments by rouge agents are causing the government hundreds of thousands of dollars on a daily basis, according to the Ministry.
“Accordingly, the Ministry of Finance has launched a special revenue enhancement operation to ensure that regular and periodic spot checks and audits are conducted on employees and businesses in rural areas. This vigorous and aggressive spot check campaign will ensure that loopholes are closed and employees are monitored all in an attempt to enhance revenue collections,” the release continued. “These operations come against established evidence that revenue fraud and loopholes undermine the Ministry’s ability to successfully collect revenue. This enhancement operation will focus on revenue monitoring and awareness nationwide. To support this revenue enhancement undertaking, the Ministry has set up a dedicated fund to finance the frequent and spontaneous activities that are required under this project.”
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance said it strongly believes that fiscal discipline, transparency and accountability can play a critical role in helping to contain corruption and raise the needed resources to finance our country’s development.