The Central Bank of Liberia will continue to rollout its loan scheme for Liberian businesses, the Executive Governor of the Bank Dr. Joseph Mills Jones has declared.
According to Dr. Jones, the Bank is continuing the loan program because Liberian people have confirmed that the scheme is benefitting them.
Speaking to hundreds of jubilant youths, students, traditional leaders and business people in Tienii Town, Tewor District, Grand Cape Mount County on Friday, June 20 Governor Jones insisted that Liberians must be major players in their economy if they were to lift themselves out of poverty.
“We can’t be bystanders in our own economy and expect not to be poor. If we want to fight and win the war against poverty, we must go to our towns and villages where poverty is,” he said.
The CBL boss, who also broke ground for a multipurpose palaver hut for the youth and student communities in the District, challenged the people to love their country and work hard to develop it.
Thomas Massaquoi, youth coordinator of Grand Cape Mount County disclosed that the palaver hut costs about US$40,000. “It is a modern palaver hut that will provide students and young people the environment to research and learn,” Massaquoi said. Impressed by the project, Governor Jones announced that he will personally pay for the project from his pocket. “I will make it my duty to personally build this palaver hut with my own money,” he declared.
Mr. Massaquoi also officially presented the manifesto of the Grand Cape Mount Loan and Savings Club to the CBL boss and urged the Governor to support the initiatives of the young people in the county.
Massaquoi and his colleague, Abraham Passawe, explained to Governor Jones how the economic condition of the people of Grand Cape Mount County is deplorable and urged him to quickly intervene through the Bank’s microfinance program.
The CBL loan scheme has been criticized in some quarters of the Liberian society with some Liberians accusing the Governor of using the program to accomplish political gains.
The Governor has since denied this claim, categorically challenging his critics to adduce evidence to prove their claim.
A Few months ago, the legislature enacted a controversial law banning Governor Jones and his deputies from contesting any political seat for three consecutive years after the expiration of their tenures at the Bank.
“We must work, produce and own our own factories,” he said. “Building schools, clinics and latrines next door won’t help us out of poverty and so we must produce.” The CBL boss assured the people Grand Cape Mount County that the Bank’s Treasury/Microfinance Unit will work with them to ensure that they have financial access to do business.
He, however, implored the people of Tienii Town to help erase the idea that Liberians don’t pay debt or know how to do business.
“It is important that you pay back when you borrow because you will have created opportunity for another Liberian to benefit if you pay,” Governor Jones added.
Earlier, Grand Cape Mount County Senatorial aspirant Dr. Foday Kromah observed that the CBL’s contribution to the economy through Governor Jones is making the difference in the lives of ordinary Liberians across the country.
“The role you are playing is difficult, but good,” said Dr. Kromah. “Contempt charges may hang over you every day, but please don’t give up because our people depend on you,” he pleaded in brief remarks at the ceremony.
Also pleading with the CBL boss to extend its loan scheme to Grand Cape Mount County were the cross-border women and elders of Tewor District. “Please don’t forget about the women of Tewor District. Our businesses are suffering because we don’t have financial support to help improve them,” said the women.
Speaking earlier, the Commissioner of Tewor District Mrs. Magdalene Haja Fahnbulleh declared that the people of Tewor District have prayed over the years to see Governor Jones visits them. “We have long awaited your arrival so that we can share our plight with you,” she said.
Our business reporter who was on the trip to Tienii says most of the people in the town are still struggling to rebuild their lives economically. Accompanying Governor Jones in Grand Cape Mount County was the Director of Administration at the CBL Madam D. Sheba Brown, the CBL Chief of Staff Mr. Crayton O. Duncan and the Bank’s Microfinance officials, amongst others.