A Special Presidential Charity Program has raised US$333,000 and L$8.4 million, to help support children who are vulnerable or in need of education and healthcare services in Liberia.
The Special Presidential Charity funds will be managed by the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC), which is currently headed by Mayor Jefferson T. Koijee, a staunch member of the Coalition For Democratic Change (CDC).
The Charity Program fundraising event, held yesterday at the Monrovia City Hall, brought together government officials, entrepreneurs, investors and others.
The picture of President George Weah is being used to raise funds by the Special Presidential Charity Program. Government officials, entrepreneurs and others were asked to purchase it and have it in their various offices and business places.
President Weah lauded supporters of his program, indicating that the fund will be used to support those who are in need.
“I’m glad that all of you are here today to support or give something for the most celebrated pictures. Over the years, my pictures have become marketable all over the world,” President Weah said.
He said he was not just in the program to pay for his pictures, but to also sell them, especially to those who believe in the “pro-poor agenda.”
“My wife Clar also informed me, when she recently returned from Grand Bassa, that a home of blind people did not have a toilet, which such initiative is geared towards to ensure that less fortunate people benefit,” President Weah said.
He called on Liberians to use their money wisely, to ensure that it reaches or meets its target objectives.
Attending the event were Mamadou Coulibaly, CEO of Orange-Liberia, who pledged to pay US$50,000, T. Nelson Williams made a similar pledge of US$10,000; Peter Koleade Adegunle, CEO of TOTAL Liberia, and Musa Bility, former CEO of Srimex, pledged US$25,000 plus 1,000 gallons of fuel and acting managing director of the National Port Authority (NPA) Cecelia Cuffy-Browne pledged US$6,000.
Some institutions and individuals, instead of making pledges, provided cash in checks and called on others to follow suit, to ensure that the “pro-poor” agenda is achieved.
Mayor Koijee said the program is intended to support the “pro-poor agenda” of President George M. Weah and will positively go towards the education and health of vulnerable Liberians.
Shortly after the announcement of the total amount raised, supporters of the charity program were seen smiling and celebrating, especially the mayor of Monrovia.
“We believe in supporting those Liberians who cannot afford to go to school or parents who cannot afford to pay their children’s school fees, as well as take care of the health needs of their families. We are concerned about these things and believe that whatever is raised here will be used to address some of the needs of our people,” Mayor Koijee said.
He lauded President Weah and others for taking the time off to be part of the program and supporting the “pro-poor agenda” of the government.
Mayor Koijee said the program is aimed at raising US$3.6 million, noting that it would help the government, particularly the MCC, in alleviating some of the health and education challenges faced by vulnerable Liberians.
Others who pledged to provide funds to the charity program included Foreign Minister Ghezogngar Findley, Minister of State Nathaniel McGill, who pledged US$12,000, Representative Munah Pelham-Youngblood of District 9, Montserrado County, who pledged US$2,000; the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA), National Social Security and Welfare Corporation, Sethi Brothers, who made a pledge of L$1.5 million and Beni Diogo Ladji Kouyateh, who took the only signed picture for US$50,000.