Special Awards In Pictures

-As President Submits Financing Agreements Weekly
The manner in which President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is conducting her activities at this point in time with less than six months to the extremity to her presidency is raising eyebrows in some quarters.

The President, in recent time, has been forwarding different agreements to the National Legislature for ratifications in a way seen as an attempt to redeem the time of dormancy, or a rush hour move to get the ‘undone things done.’
In some countries, presidents whose tenures are on the verge of extremity are not allowed to make or take actions that could have adverse effects or create bottlenecks for incoming administrations with different policy approaches and agendas.
The Republicans in the United States Congress did not allow then President Barack Obama from naming a replacement for dead Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court.
In recent time, the Liberian leader has been submitting several financing agreements to the National Legislature for passage claiming to be in the best interest of the country and its people.
Already, some of those Bills have been passed while some are still been considered.
Prominent among those financing agreements are the Loan Agreement of Republic of Liberia with the Kuwait Fund, Health Financing Agreement with the World Bank in the tone of US$15 million and
an agreement for Road Network in the tone of US$59.6 million.
The President Thursday submitted a Financing Agreement for the Regional Disease Surveillance Systems Enhancement Project In West Africa (REDISSE), and Financing Agreement for the Third Poverty Reduction Support among others.
Her take on the Agreements
Regarding those Financing Agreement Laws, the Liberian leader has repeatedly said they are meant to improve the country’s economy, health and social conditions.
She said those laws also aimed to help the government realize its objectives in the implementation of the Economic Stabilization Recovery Plan that was adopted after the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak and the mitigation of the fiscal gap for 2017/2018.
Both Houses, the upper and lower approved the Bill, entitled, “the Financing Agreement for the Third Poverty Reduction Support Development Policy Operation (PRSDPOIII).”
The Financing Agreement was reached between Liberia and the International Development Association (IDA).
“The Financing Agreement when ratified into law will enable the government to achieve these objectives and improve the economic condition that will help to alleviate poverty and make our citizens self- sufficient,” she said.
She has been in the highest seat of the land since 2006 with her tenures expected to end in January 2018.
Her administration, according to records, has received the highest foreign aid in grants and loans since 2006 to present.
On the contrary, Liberians are allegedly living below the poverty line according to world records.
Liberians are reportedly living in bad conditions, crushing rocks for survivors, sleeping in graveyards, operating ‘push-push’ (a locally made wheelbarrow that carries heavy loads), lack of jobs for citizens including college and university graduates, deplorable road conditions, hikes in prices of basic commodities, skyrocketing US dollar exchange rate among others.
In her 2006 inaugural address to Liberians and the world, President Sirleaf assured Liberians that fathers of various homes will go homes with smiles because they would have money in their pockets, a promise many Liberians continue to say has not been accomplished.
Although the country’s national budget has increased from US$88 million in 2006 to US$622 million in 2016/2017, however, large portion of those budgets had gone toward administrative costs, as authenticated by former Finance and Development Planning Minister Amara Konneh and former Chairman of the governing Unity Party, Senator Varney Sherman.
The Moore Stevens audit conducted on the extractive industry of the country showed that 68 of the concession agreements signed in the country prior to President Sirleaf’s second term were not in favor of the country.

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