Inflation Hits Liberia
-Gov’t Loses Control On Exchange Rate
-Where Are The “Trained Economists”
From all indications, it is undisputable that inflation has hit Liberia; prices of all commodities, including locally produced and imported goods, are skyrocketing by the day dictated by uninterrupted high exchange rate between the US and the Liberian dollars.
As Public Agenda found out, this harsh economic crisis is creating unbearable adversity which is being felt at all levels across the country and needs urgent solution.Although critics of the current regime under the leadership of George Manneh Weah are making it to appear that the existing situation is the making of the Weah Administration, independent minded people who are tracing the root cause of the situation are accrediting it to the “poor” handling of the Liberian economy in the last 12 years under former Pres. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Some say, agriculture, which is the substratum to the evolution of any nation’s economy, was flagrantly given lip-service and the regime utterly failed to put into place sound economic strategies that would have prevented Liberia from enduring this period of recession; the regime’s only excuse at the time was “prices of iron ore and rubber” dropped on the world market and did not make any effort to find an alternative means.
Millions of US dollars were pumped into the agriculture sector under the Sirleaf regime but not much was achieved during the 12 year reign.
Unfortunately, the Weah Administration is reaping from what was sowed in the last 12 years by Harvard trained Liberia economist, Pres. Sirleaf who ruled the country under the protection of heavy international forces backed by goodwill under the auspices of the United Nations.
At the moment, it is clear that the current regime has lost total control over the exchanged rate situation and it has reached to a crisis point making many Liberians to ask “where are the trained economists in the country”.
Various interpretations have characterized the current economic meltdown; some are using the normal economic theories which have to do with ‘import and export’ of goods, but there are those who think that Liberia’s current crisis needs much attention rather than those.
In the final half of the Sirleaf regime, it printed millions of local banknotes whose quantity is still a taboo for the public to know. The government printed the new currency under the pretext that it wanted to replace the old banknotes but failed to do so.
The failure of the Sirleaf regime to disclose the total amount that was printed attempts to validate rumors that the money is being reproduced by unscrupulous businesspeople and other economic criminals who are reportedly pumping on the market huge quantity of the printed banknotes to destabilize the economy and cause hardship for the citizens.
Meanwhile, many Liberians are suggesting the changing of the current two currencies and have them replaced; the printing must be done in an advanced country that would not tolerate the unauthorized reproduction, other Liberians have suggested.