President George Weah has constituted a committee comprising the Minister of Finance, Samuel Tweh, and his Economic Advisor Charles Bright to work out modalities with the bank to delay the payment of loans taken by marketeers.
On August 4, 2021, hundreds of sellers were seen joyously pouring into the office of the market superintendent, Mary Wallace with loan documents from their respective banks to be submitted to the committee to plead with these banks to defer their loan payments.
The gesture is a result of the disruption in market activities caused by the relocation of the market from congested Red Light to Omega. The delay pushed by the President will enable marketers to recover some of their losses caused by the relocation.
“The President chaired a cabinet meeting on Monday and, at the meeting, the government decided to come up with a solution to compensate marketeers for their losses,” said Presidential Press Secretary Isaac Solo Kelgbeh.
“Because most of you were not selling, there was some deduction in marketing activity, so the government has set up a committee comprising the Minister of Finance, the economic advisor to the President and some financial actors. They are tasked to liaise with the banks for loan payment to be deferred,” he added.
According to him, the government is thinking about paying the loan interest but that decision has not been reached yet.
“What we are looking at now is for the bank to not hold marketeers or seize anything from them because they did not pay the loan. The bank is being asked to defer the payment to about 3 months so they will be able to pay. When it comes to payment of interest, the government is still studying that,” he disclosed.
Kelgbeh added that the government is working with lenders to show some understanding to vulnerable borrowers as a strong stimulus for their business survival.