Liberia’s Finance Ministry Fires Two For Fraud

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.

ImageAfter 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.

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Author: D K Sengbeh

Danicius Kaihenneh Sengbeh (author of Sengbeh's Weblog) is a respected and renowned Liberian journalist, poet and writer with with journalism experience since 2001, of working both as a mainstream journalist and a communication/media consultant in Liberia. He is Secretary General of the Press Union of Liberia (elected Dec 2013). He was Assistant Secretary General of the Union Dec 2011 to Dec 2013. He is also Editor-In-Chief of The Informer Newspaper—one of Liberia’s credible dailies. Before joining the Informer, Danicius had served as reporter, chief reporter, sub-editor and News Editor at The Independent Newspaper between 2002 and 2006. Before then, he was reporter at the defunct Patriot Newspaper and Kiss FM 2001-2002. Danicius is a UN Media Fellow and Liberia’s first UN Medal Award-winning journalist for his contribution to journalism and for being the second Liberian journalist in 15 years to qualify for and successfully attended the United Nations’ Reham Al-Farra Memorial Journalist Fellowship Program in New York and Geneva, Switzerland in 2012. He earned a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Mass Communication and Sociology from the University of Liberia and a Diploma in Journalism from the International School of Journalism. He holds several awards and recognitions both in and outside of journalism, and carries dozens of certificates in journalism and communication from studies in Ghana, China, United States and Switzerland, among others. He volunteers as Chair of the Information and Communication Committee of his local Bardnersville community. He can be quickly reached via (+231) 886586531/777586531/777464018/ dakasen1978@yahoo.com

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