The Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) has arrested the Managing Director of the National Transit Authority (NTA), Harbie McCauley, on allegations of corruption.
McCauley's arrest follows a day of street protest by employees of the public transport entity outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, now the seat of the Liberian Presidency, and on the grounds of Legislature on allegations of corruption and failure to manage the entity.
McCauley was seen under protective guard of staff of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission and taken to the conference room of the commission and later transferred to a holding facility of individuals allegedly involved in corruption.
Before being transferred into the commission's holding facility, McCauley was asked to call his lawyer ahead of any interrogation by the commission's investigators.
His arrest followed minutes after the newly inducted Executive Chairperson of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission, Cllr. Edwin K. Martins, vowed to prosecute any official of government involved in any act of corruption, both present and past.
McCauley, who was heavily guarded by security personnel of LACC, displayed bodily fear upon entering the conference room of the commission.
Though the LACC is yet to brief the public on the total amount of money allegedly squandered, it is reported that McCauley took US$200,000 to purchase spare parts for the NTA’s fleet of buses.
McCauley, who is reported to have German citizenship, is alleged to have taken money from the NTA account for personal use.
While sitting in the conference room, McCauley received several calls but continuously said, “I was just picked up by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission and brought to their office.”
During yesterday’s protest, employees promised that they will make sure McCauley is investigated as he has demonstrated and carried out “His corrupt attitude at the NTA.”
According to the workers, the protest is a result of McCauley’s failure to settle their arrears for months. The workers parked several buses in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs during the protest.
Despite funding from the government, the NTA is generating its own money from running the buses in Monrovia and other parts of the country, and they are sometimes chartered for high costs.
Wednesday's protest started as early as 6 a.m. and lasted for several hours, followed by some of the leaders appearing on the radio programs to provide reasons for the protest.
McCauley was appointed by President George M. Weah in February 2018, along with several officials of government to steer the affairs of the National Transit Authority.