Liberian opposition leader George Manneh
Oppong Weah said the government of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is not
committed enough to fighting corruption.
Weah, who is chairman of the Congress
for Democratic Change (CDC), said if the president were dedicated enough to fighting
corruption, she would stop recycling those officials found to be corrupt.
He was in Washington over the weekend to attend a meeting of the
U.S. chapter of the CDC which was held on the campus of the University of
president wants to deal with corruption but she is not accepting to deal with
those people that are corrupt. So where somebody is corrupt and the president
takes the person from one position to another, the problem is going to exist,"
Information Minister Cletus Sieh described Weah's criticism as
said while corruption is endemic in the Liberian society, President Sirleaf has
committed her government to minimizing if not eradicating corruption.
are not saying that we have totally eradicated corruption, but we've made
corruption one of the key issues here in Liberia. But to say that this
government is not doing enough in terms of fighting corruption, we think this
is rather unfortunate," Sieh said.
also criticized the government's claim that it has appointed an Anti-Corruption
Commission, headed by former elections commission chairperson Frances
Johnson-Morris, as part of the government's efforts to fighting graft.
is the boss of the Anti-Corruption Bureau? It's the same person that they
charged for corruption. When we try to weed out corruption, we should be very
honest in doing it. How can you put people that people know they're corrupt
into a bureau that will address those issues?" Weah said.
Information Minister Sieh defended the appointment of Johnson-Morris,
describing her as a woman of repute.
rejected Weah's claims that the Sirleaf government was recycling corrupt
officials by moving them from one government agency to the next.
government is not going to be involved in jungle justice. We have a rule of
law. If someone is accused, they are given their day in court and they must
therefore go and exonerate themselves," he said.
said public perception of corruption is different from reality, and the
Liberian government was not going to act on public perceptions.
Weah, who lost the 2005 elections to President Sirleaf, also told
VOA he is now a sophomore in college in the United
our elections, I came back to the States and enrolled in Duval University,
presently a sophomore student and interacting with my party and making sure
that CDC becomes a beautiful party for the Liberian people and try to maintain
peace and stability in our country," he said.
who said he still has interest in politics, said he's not majoring in politics
but in business administration
know, it's my first major so I'm doing business administration. You know
business administration has all the disciplines. It deals with politics,
leadership. So that's what I chose to do," Weah said.
a month and a half ago, the Liberia Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) submitted
its final report to the national legislature.
The commission recommended
the prosecution of more than 90 alleged perpetrators for war crimes and several
others for economic crimes.
The TRC's final report also
recommended that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and about 51 others be banned
from politics for the next 30 years.
called on President Sirleaf and the Liberian Legislature to implement the Truth