CBL In Integrity Predicament
-Grapples With Image Redemption
-Entwined With Corruption Allegation
-While Millions Of Minted Coins Unaccounted For
To some Liberians, if not majority of the citizens, the name of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) is closely associated with corruption, characterized by alleged missing of billions of printed Liberian banknote sand alleged disappearance of container of billions.
This perception, according to some critical minds which are meticulously following the entire saga surrounding the alleged disappearance of billions of Liberians banknotes would take years, if not centauries, to erase and recover the wounded integrity of the Bank and its officials.
As The Public Agenda Reports, the CBL which is already in integrity predicament and grappling with image redemption, recently held a press conference and attempted to dispel any iota of truth about an omitted dime from the 15.5 billion of printed Liberian banknotes between 2016 and August 2018.
The CBL’s last minutes-to-time response to the entire hubbub has generated more questions than answers in the public, something critics claim, was an attempt, calculatedly to offensively undermine the ongoing investigation of the alleged missing billions and which some described, as horrifying financial indecorum. Other say, if the CBL knew that the controversial billions of dollars brought into the country were intact, why it delayed to tell the Liberian people until the crisis went out of hand before providing such an unconfirmed defense.
As investigation unfolds into such financial scandal which has given the Nation rude awaken recently, it is not clear whether the CBL and its officials with already tainted image can come out from the investigation room with flying colors and be given resounding ovation from the public.
Those who are judiciously following the saga void of political sentiments and prejudices, strongly believe that the CBL could be held accountable for failure to totally respect the propose that impelled the printing of the “L$15.5 billion” which it confirmed printing, although unconfirmed reports say, the CBL printed excess of money in other countries other than Sweden; China and Lebanon are amongst the countries where the controversial banknotes were printed without proper authorization.
It is reported that the CBL was mandated to print and replace the old banknotes and mint coins which is reflected in “Resolution No. BR-06-/2017 By Board Of Governors, CBL”.
According to sections 1 &2 of the Resolution, the Executive Governor of the CBL was authorized to replace the legacy L$ notes completely with newly printed banknotes so that there would be a single type of L$ currency, thus facilitating proper control of the money supply and the CBL was further authorized to introduce coins in lower denominations into the economy to allow fractional transactions, which according to the Board of Governors, could help to minimize inflation.
But despite the crisis that submerges the alleged printed $15.5 billion dollars, CBL officials are yet to comment on previous coins that were also minted long before the 2017 resolution which authorized the minting of additional coins.
Unconfirmed sources say, coins left at the CBL by former Governor J. Mills Jones were tampered with later after his departure from the Bank, something the current officials are tightlipped on.