Foreign Ministry Speaks on Passport Saga

4
1212
Acting Foreign Minister, Henry B. Fahnbulleh

At long last, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has strongly reacted to statements made by the suspended Director of Passport and Visa, Andrew Wonploe, who claimed that the government is involved in the sale of honorary and diplomatic passports.

In reaction to Wonploe, Acting Foreign Affairs Minister, Henry B. Fahnbulleh, said the MFA does not sell or have a policy that supports or encourages the sale of diplomatic passports or honorary consulate positions.

Min. Fahbulleh added that Liberia, as a sovereign country, has the right to pursue an independent foreign policy to achieve its diplomatic objectives, so every decision that was made is in the best interest of the state and its people.

“Nothing precludes the government from acting in its national interest including pursuing independent foreign policy objectives. This is recognized and enshrined aforementioned of the Vienna Convention of 1962. This government has and will continue to formulate foreign policy objectives in line with the country’s national development plan,” Min. Fahnbulleh said. “These policies are in line with tradition to pursue the country’s interest nationally. Liberia, has you may know, does not have the financial capacity to open an embassy in all the 192 countries of the world; therefore, we are utilizing the platform available to us via the Vienna Convention on consulate relations, of which Liberia is a party.”

Addressing a news conference in Monrovia yesterday, Fahnbulleh said although the Court initially set Wonploe free, it was due to the undercover investigation conducted by the Government of Liberia which aided the US Government to take such action against the country’s former Director of Passport.

Min. Fahnbulleh added that the action by Wonploe to be releasing audio to the public and accusing other individuals of being a link to the passport saga is unfortunate and sad.

“Anyone who engages in the sale of passport is in complete violation of the law and such a person should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Diplomat, official and service passport are a privilege not right. Determination for these passports is made as to who is qualified to receive either category,” Min. Fahnbulleh added. “These categories of passports don’t convey citizenship on the person, rather it is the ordinary passport. These privileges can be revoked or canceled or quenched when it is discovered and proven that the holders of the passport have abused it.

Meanwhile, Min. Fahnbulleh has disclosed that the government of former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf appointed forty-seven honorary Consulates while the current government number of appointments stands at 21. 

Earlier, Wonploe in an unsigned release and audio recording that former Minister Gbehzohngar M. Findley was the person who represented the Liberian Government under President Weah to illegally issue Liberian passports to foreigners around the world.

“The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Gbehzohngar Milton Findley, often acts in the place of the Chief Executive (i.e. President Weah) when it comes to the issuance of diplomatic passports.  My fellow Liberians, CDCians and foot soldiers of the cause, please be informed that the passport scarcity was planned illegally and executed by the Government of Liberia represented by Gbehzohngar Milton Findley.  Gbehzohngar is currently using proceeds from said illegal transactions to fund his campaign,” Wonplo’s statement said.

It can be recalled early this week, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Gbehzohngar Milton Findley, in frantic efforts to clear his name said that the allegations by Costa, Wonploe and others that he participated in the trade insisted that the claims from Costa, Wonploe, and others are all false and intend to tarnish his good public service track records.

Amb. Findley furthermore narrated that, contrary to allegations by Costa, Wonploe and others, Honorable Counsel General positions were not sold, but based on proper vetting, which was done in keeping with the laws and procedures of Liberia and with the involvement of the National Security Agency (NSA).

“For the record, I did not instruct the former passport director to trade a Liberian passport to a non-Liberian. While serving as Minister, all Honorary Consuls were commissioned and issued diplomatic passports based on proper vetting by the government in compliance with international protocol and laws,” Amb. Findley said.

“Wonplo did not act alone but rather it was a conspiracy between a Nigerian individual stationed in Ghana and some staff members of the passport section jointly working with Andrew Wonplo in carrying out the criminal conspiracy.

“The issue of these missing passports is not a strange issue to me because, as Minister of Foreign Affairs, I initiated a full-scale investigation conducted with the involvement of the NSA. Let me assure Liberians and the world that Liberian passports are safe, and we kept the integrity of our international passports and credentials safe,” Findley added.

4 COMMENTS

  1. I knew there was going to be a comparison between their rulership and Ellen’s. “Ellen appointed 47 honorary consulates, we have appointed only 21”, stupid and wicked people!

    Use your commonsense man. Ellen was there for 12 years and according to you, appointed 47 honorary consulates. You are there just 3 years and yet you have already appointed 21 drugs dealers and international rogues as our honorary consulates, just look at the ratio!

    Findley is distributing money all over the place in Buchanan campaigning, where did he get the money to waste as he’s doing if you claim Wonploe is lying?

    I blame the Liberian people who voted you guys, bunch of irresponsible and unqualified children!

    • Petarus, what a silly question!: “Findley is distributing money all over the place in Buchanan campaigning, where did he get the money to waste as he’s doing if you claim Wonploe is lying? ”

      From where did Findley get the money when he became Senator prior to becoming Foreign Minister? You are a very insane boy? From where did he get the money when he Findley became President of the Pro Tempore of the Liberian Senate?

      Instead of you thinking about how you are disgracing yourself, our county and within your church, family and friends, as you are there worshiping an Alex Cummings who Joseph Boakai, Benoni Urey, and even lawyers who are not in your CPP, have publicly condemned the very Alex Cummings for his being a BUTT BOY AND A GAY RAPIST, you are here disgracing our county every day.

      “Come on board to ANC, Come on Board to ANC”? Who told you that is how one recruits for their party or coalition?

      Now you saw the bombastic and INFLATED EGO response you heard from Telford Ammons that “Alex Cummings should personally send him a letter or personally communicate to him” to join a political party.

      You behave as if someone is not in their right mind. YOU MUST BE ONE OF ALEX CUMMINGS MALE GIRL FRIENDS.

      • Our county? Our county? Our county? Are you referring to Nimba? If you are child of Nimba, show your identity.
        The children of Nimba are not faceless coward to high behind pseudonym. If you are man enough, show your identity. I will make someone to slap you from where you are for calling me stupid boy.

        You called Dr. Ammons’ exchange with me as “bombastic”? In fact, what do you mean by this word?

        You guys think we will leave Liberia in your hands to doom, no way brother, rest assured. A responsible minister will never have the face to talk when such disgrace had been discovered by a foreign government under his watch and even punished by such government.

        Peace unto your ignorant and afflicted soul, we (ANC) will make Liberia better for all, irrespective of ethnic origin or religious affiliation!

  2. I read in the Front page Africa online news article that the government is not going to investigate the passport saga, because there has not being any compliments before the foreign ministry of any wrong doings by any of those vetted as “honorary” counsels of Liberia; of course the foreign ministry will not investigate, because doing so will surely expose president Weah’s full involvement in the saga. Why have the other higher ups named not come out to clear their names? Names like chief of protocol, Nora Finda Bundoo, Minister Kpui, and others need to come to clear their names.
    Why didn’t the foreign ministry explore the possibility of vetting a credible Mexican businessman, or a Liberian to act in our behave in Mexico? Did the ministry of foreign affairs know that the Nigerian vetted to represent our interest in Mexico had been denied twice a US visa? Did the guys at our foreign ministry know that this Nigerian had also been denied by the Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf government a Liberian diplomatic passport? What really was the rational in vetting a Nigerian to represent and act in our behave in Mexico?
    Until this foreign ministry really do a robust investigation into this diplomatic passport saga, some of us will come to believe the former passport director, Andrew Wonploe, that there is a cartel operating at that foreign ministry engaged in the selling of Liberian diplomatic passports to the highest bidder. And I am sure that George Weah has his hands inside, which is why the foreign ministry does not want to investigate this saga.

    Tolo Bonah Corfah

Leave a Reply