Daily Media Summary 2017-05-17

The Bureau of Public Affairs

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Monrovia, Liberia


News of the presentation of Letters of Accreditation to Foreign Minister Marjon Kamara by the new UNAIDS Country Director to Liberia, Ms. Miriam Chirico; the uncovering of more fake revenue instruments by the Liberia Revenue Authority and the release by the Liberia National Police of its crimes statistics for the month of April 2017 are among stories dominating today’s edition of our summary of the local dailies.


Other stories include the presentation of Letters of Credence by Kuwaiti and Rwanda Ambassadors to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the signing of US$15M health financing Agreement between the Government of Liberia and the World Bank.



New UNAIDS Country Director Presents Letters Of Accreditation To Foreign Minister


The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marjon Kamara, has received the Letters of Accreditation from the new UNAIDS Country Director to Liberia, Ms. Miriam Chipimo. According to a Foreign Ministry release, at a brief ceremony in the Ministry’s conference room recently, Foreign Minister Kamara welcomed Ms. Chipimo to Liberia and expressed her delight that the new UNAIDS Country Director, also a female, is taking forward the work of this UN agency in Liberia.  The UNAIDS is working with stakeholders including the National AIDS Commission, Ministry of Health and other partners have developed a “Catch-up Plan” for Liberia which sets targets at 2020, reports  FrontPage Africa newspaper.


Related Caption: New UNAIDS Country Director Presents Letters Of Accreditation(The INQUIRER), New UNAIDS Boss Presents Letter Of Accreditation(The New Dawn)


Fake, Stolen Revenue Instruments Rock LRA, MOT 2 In Custody Assisting LNP Probe

According to the Daily Observer, the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) says it has discovered about 20 fake revenue instruments in the last few days through its Customs Compliance and Enforcement Division. The LRA said in a press release yesterday that it has discovered a grand syndicate that produces fake revenue instruments, including vehicle registration, driver’s license certificates, government flag receipts, customs documents as well as business registration documents. The LRA’s press release came the same day as it was reported that the Ministry of Transport (MOT) was burglarized over the weekend.  Items stolen from MOT were mainly “revenue instruments,” the Daily Observer overheard employees explain. From the LRA, two of the persons involved in the production of the fake revenue documents and are robbing the country of legitimate revenues have been arrested and forwarded to the Liberia National Police for further investigation.


Related Captions: Liberia Revenue Authority Uncovers Fake Revenue Instruments(FrontPage Africa), LRA Uncovers More Fake(In Profile Daily) and LRA Uncovers More Fake Revenue Instruments(Heritage).In a related development, the FOCUS newspaper reports under the caption LRA Gets OSIWA Grant For Tax Awareness, Other Initiatives-Uncovers More Fake Revenue Instruments”that  the Open Society Initiative of West Africa (OSIWA) has approved a US$498,000 grant to the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) to help bolster the authority’s domestic resource mobilization drive. According to the daily, the grant agreement was recently signed between Rue Ibrahima, Head of OSIWA Dakar Office and LRA Commissioner General, Mrs. Elfrieda Stewart Tamba. Commissioner General Tamba has applauded OSIWA for the grant and indicated that it will be used to conduct an audit in the maritime sector, develop a framework for tax expenditure reporting and produce the first comprehensive tax expenditure report to include both customs and tax and accelerate the preparation of LRA Practice Notes.  The LRA Chief Executive Officer says the funding will support tax awareness by the establishment of over 10 tax clubs in schools across the country to sensitize tomorrow workforce of the importance of taxation and paying taxes as a civil responsibility.


Related caption: LRA Benefits US$498,000 Grant(The New Dawn)


Bong Tops LNP Crime Statistics-As Paynesville Recorded Hot Spot.

The Liberia National Police has released its crimes statistics for the month of April 2017, with Bong County recording the highest number of crimes committed during the course of the reporting month, while Gbapolu and Rever Gee Counties recorded the lowest crime rate. The report puts Paynesville city as recording the highest number of crimes among urban areas, while Central Monrovia recorded the lowest. The LNP report says a total of one thousand one crimes were committed throughout the country during the month with youth between the ages of 20 to 24 and 25 to 29 being captured as the highest number of perpetrators. The In Profile Daily says for crimes committed by foreign nationals residing in Liberia, Labanese and Malians recorded the lowest, while Guineans recorded the highest with 36, representing 4% of the total number of crimes committed in Liberia in April.


Related Captions: More Crimes in Bong…As Paynesville City Becomes Hot Spot(FrontPage Africa), Guineans Top Foreign Nationals In Crimes(The New Dawn)



MYS Moves To Resolve LINSU Crisis

The Ministry of Youth and Sports has set up an intervention committee to help resolve the lingering leadership crisis within the Liberia National Student Union (LINSU). The committee comprises peace-building organizations and youth development institutions, including the Internal Affairs office of Liberia’s Peace Ambassador Rev. William R. Tolbert, the University of Liberia-based Kofi Annan Institute for Conflict Transformation, UNFPA and the Women’s NGO Secretariat. Speaking in an exclusive interview with the Insight newspaper recently, Assistant Minister for Youth Development at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Kula V. Fofanna said the Ministry would provide the committee the necessary support to succeed in its work, reports he INSIGHT newspaper.


Related Captions: MYS Sets Up Committee To Resolve LINSU Crisis(In Profile Daily), and Intervention Committee Set Up To Resolve LINSU Crisis(Heritage)




Kuwaiti, Rwandan Ambassadors Present Letters Of Credence

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has received Letters of Credence from the new Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kuwait, Dr. Mathias Harebamungu and Mr. Mohammed Fadel Khalaf of Rwanda. An Executive Mansion release said, the two Ambassadors presented their Letters of Credence on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at the Foreign Ministry Office of the Liberian leader in Monrovia. Receiving the Letters of Credence of the new Ambassador of Kuwait, President Sirleaf recalled the strong friendship between the two countries, indicating how pleased she was to have made a State Visit to Kuwait in the past. She noted that Liberia has had strong support from Kuwait in the areas of road construction, port development, amongst others and expressed the gratitude of the Government and people of Liberia to the Kuwaiti. For his part, Ambassador Harebamungu noted that his assignment to Liberia will remain forever a memory. He acknowledged the strong leadership exhibited by President Sirleaf particularly during the Ebola crisis and during reconstruction of Liberia. He highlighted some of the interventions made in Liberia by Kuwait and assured that he will work harder for more support from Kuwait to Liberia’s development process. Receiving the Letters of Credence of the new Ambassador of Rwanda to Liberia, President Sirleaf reflected on her work as Head of the Africa Bureau of the UNDP which took her to Rwanda on many occasion and expressed satisfaction on the level of progress made after the genocide. Also speaking, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Liberia, Mohammed FadelKhalaf noted that Rwanda is committed to its friendship with Liberia and appreciated President Sirleaf for her experience and quality of leadership, reports the New Dawn newspaper.


Gov’t, World Bank Sign US$15m Health Financing Agreement

According to the Daily Observer, the Government of Liberia and the World Bank have signed a US$15 million Health Financing Agreement for collaborative disease surveillance and epidemic preparedness in the country. A statement issued yesterday in Monrovia by the Ministry of Finance & Development Planning (MFDP) said the agreement will provide the needed opportunity for Liberia to ‘operationalize’ lessons from the recent disease outbreak in Sinoe County. Finance and Development Planning Minister Boima Kamara extolled the World Bank Board of Directors for endorsing the US$15 million to enhance Liberia’s healthcare delivery system. For her part, World Bank Liberia Country Manager Madam Larisha Leshchenko extended deepest condolences to the victims and families of the recent disease outbreak in Sinoe County and commended the Liberian government and partners for their effective responses to control the transmission.


Related Caption: Liberia, World Bank Sign US$15M Deal to Collaborate Disease Surveillance(FrontPage Africa)


Pres. Sirleaf Calls For Investment To End Hunger In Liberia

The FOCUS newspaper says President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has stressed the need for investment in the agriculture sector to end hunger in Liberia. She stated that Liberia has the potential to grow more food and export in the sub-region and other parts of the world. According to the daily, the Liberian leader made the statement Tuesday when she launched Liberia’s Zero Hunger Strategic Review Report. She noted that for Liberi to attain zero hunger by the year 2030, it require the collective efforts of all Liberians and international partners  with technical support from farmers.


Related Caption: Zero Hunger By 2030 Report Launch(FrontPage Africa)


HIV Strikes 40,000…Highest Prevalence Rate Detected In Montserrado, Margibi and Bassa

According to the INSIGHT newspaper, the new UNAIDS Country Director to Liberia, Ms. Miriam Chipimo, has disclosed plans to work with stakeholders including the National AIDS Commission, Ministry of Health and other partners in contributing to the response of HIV prevalence in Liberia and picking up from where her predecessor, Dr. Betru Woldesemaya, left off. According to Ms. Chipimo, of the 40,000 persons with the virus throughout the country, 6,000 of those need treatment. The Country Directed confirmed that 80 percent of the estimated 40,000 persons with the virus are in Montserrado, Margibi and Grand Bassa counties; as such, they have targeted these counties to shortly begin the program since Liberia is one of four countries way behind in meeting the targets.


Nigerian Bankers’ Institute, CBL, LBA Agree to Uplift Standards

The Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) and the Liberia Bankers’ Association (LBA) yesterday signed an agreement with the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) to provide technical assistance for the establishment of the proposed Bankers’ Institute of Liberia. The CIBN will also provide support geared towards the establishment of an examination center in Liberia. Prof. Segun Ajibola, President of CIBN who spoke at the program, said the agreement is the first international collaboration that will be executed since he assumed the leadership of the CIBN, reports the Daily Observer.


Related Caption: CBL CIBN, LBA Sign Agreement(The INQUIRER)


Grand Bassa Women Honor Prez Sirleaf

The Women of Grand Bassa County have honored and recognized President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for her outstanding leadership role played in lifting and promoting women’s rights, sustaining the country’s peace during the last 11 years, and for including women in several presidential appointments. “Madam President, we have come to say thank you especially for the women of Grand Bassa County and Liberia. You have lifted women and today, we are respected by our male colleagues,” Mother Martha Karnga, a spokesperson for the women said, writes the Daily Observer. According to the INQUIRER newspaper under the caption “Ellen Gets 250 Acres In Bassa”citizens of Grand Bassa County have appreciated President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf with 250 acres of land for her numerous contributions to the development of their county. The daily reads that the land title deed was presented to the Liberian leader on Compound two, District #2, Grand Bassa County at a program held in her honor.  Presenting the deed to President Sirleaf, Grand Bassa County Senator Nyonnblee Karnga-Lawrence said the land is being provided to Madam Sir leaf to reside in the county upon her retirement as a citizen of the county. In continuation of her recent nationwide tour, President Sirleaf visited Rivercess and Grand Bassa Counties where she dedicated several projects in the two counties.


NCCF, AABF Take Bomi With Developmental Storm-Set To Invest 300,000 Acres Of land

The New Creation Christian Followership Incorporated (NCCF) in collaboration with the African-American Business Foundation (AABF) has announced the building of fifteen modern industrial cities in the various counties of Liberia. According to the group General Manager, Michele P. Greenfield, the investment is expected to be made possible through a Land Grant that will provide 300,000 acres of land in all fifteen counties in Liberia. The FOCUS newspaper quotes Ms. Greenfield as saying that as part of the Land Grant agreement; citizens of various counties will have the right to reclaim their land if not utilized for its intended propose.


LIBA-USA Donates To Bomi Hospital

The United States Chapter of the Liberia Business Association (LIBA-USA) through its Liberia branch (LIBA-Liberia) has donated nine brand new laptop computers to the government hospital in Tubmanburg, Bomi County. The donation, according to LIBA-USA, is intended to address the lack of equipment at the facility, which followed the association’s executive members’ assessment of the hospital. Prior to the donation on Monday, May 15 in Tubmanburg, LIBA-Liberia president David K. Semgbeh recalled that in December 2016, Jackson George, LIBA-USA executive director, and his team travelled to Liberia and visited the hospital’s information technology (IT) section, reports the Daily Observer.