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Prez Sirleaf takes responsibility for NOCALs crisis

Arthur Douglas/Benjamin S. Taingay
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf

(elbcradio.com/Aug. 31, 2015)-President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has reacted to public criticisms that she is responsible for the financial crisis at the National Oil Company (NOCAL).

President Johnson-Sirleaf accepted responsibility, while noting that there were a Board of Directors and Management Team that should have taken the right decisions to prevent the situation.

“Well, as the head of the country, I have to take responsibility…,” she said in an interview with reporters upon arrival at the Roberts International Airport Sunday, August 30, 2015.

She had returned from Tokyo, Japan at the head of a high power Liberian Government delegation.

The Liberian Leader, however, said she has now taken stringent measures to ensure State Owned Enterprises are well monitored.

“That’s the reason why today I have all the State Owned Enterprises now; I have those information on their salaries, their benefits.”

“We are looking at them now to make sure their boards are functioning well and that there is reduction in cost so we won’t face any company closing anymore.”

The Liberian Leader was responding to former Public Works Minister’s assertion that she is responsible for the financial crisis.

“I suspect that former Minister, Kofi Woods, will equally be responsible for things that happened on his watch when it comes to problems that happened under his watch,” she said.

The criticisms followed the President’s order for the retirement of NOCAL’s Chief Executive Officer, the dismissal of three Vice Presidents, and reduction of staff to 50 employees.

According to her, the move was part of a sustainable action plan to address the financial crisis and make NOCAL more vibrant in developing the country’s hydro Carbon Sector.

At the same time, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf has described her trip to Japan as successful.
President Johnson-Sirleaf said Liberia stands to benefit from its bilateral cooperation with Japan, particularly, in two sectors, including road and health.

The President said while in Japan, she held bilateral discussions with the Japanese Government on the early resumption of earmarked road projects across the country, among other key sectors.

The Liberian Leader said: “Government is keen on ensuring that Japanese contractors return to Liberia to continue earmarked projects, including the Somalia Drive’s rehabilitation.

Bilateral discussions with Japanese officials also highlighted possibilities of partnering to improve Liberia’s health sector, among other strategic areas, she said.

President Johnson-Sirleaf was invited by Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, to address the 2nd World Assembly for Women.

The two-day 2nd World Assembly for Women took place in the Japanese Capital, Tokyo, on August 28 and 29, 2015.
The forum sought to achieve what the organizers called, a “World where Women Shine.”

 


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