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Government dismisses Global Witness allegation

By Sorbor George

(mylbsonlins/Liberia)-The Liberian Government has dismissed, as untrue and impossible, Global Witness’ assertion that the government is not enforcing its forest laws.

Acting Justice Minister, Benedict Sannoh, told a news conference Wednesday June 12, 2013 that laws governing the country’s forest and logging companies operations are consistent with international standards.

Counselor Sannoh said: “It was however regrettable that the continuous pronouncements by some international partners that Liberia is not enforcing its forest laws were unfounded and mischievous.”

According to the Acting Justice Minister, the Private Use Permits (PUPs) were not illegal, but some of them were acquired illegally.

“It was based on this that government imposed a moratorium on logging companies to cease operations, though the action exposed the government to revenue loss,” Counselor Sannoh noted.

He added: “It was also regrettable that Global Witness failed to bring to government’s attention names of individuals who operated in the forest sector during the conflict, but chose to accuse the government of not enforcing its forest laws.”

Acting Minister Sannoh noted: “For an international partner to make accusation of such undermines fairness and objectivity and soars government’s relationship with its international partners". 


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