By Ekena Welsey – Ahead of the 2005 elections, the Governance Commission in concert with our Development Partners saw the compelling need to birth a nascent democratic environment in the small West African nation. As a result, their brainstorming reckoned strengthened ‘Integrity Institutions’ to ensure ‘probity, accountability, transparency and to prevent waste and abuse in public sector management. Appertaining thereto; the General Auditing Commission (GAC), the Public Procurement Concession Commission (PPCC), the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC), et al took the center stage.
Call John S. Morlu whatever you would choose to brand him; under him, the GAC became transformed and proved incredibly exceptional. Comrade Dorbor Jallah brought to bear similar integrity to the PPCC. Public officials, in the past, were at no time used to accountability and therefore saw Morlu-led GAC be at the center of a politically motivated witch-hunt. Morlu and the team did not invent financial records but simply acted on those made available by various government functionaries. On the other hand, Morlu was simply saving the country undue public waste and abuse as it were.
In spite of the trimmings associated with Morlu’s contract renewal, the GAC had established for itself a track record of detecting and preventing waste and abuse in public service. Of course, anyone coming after John Morlu was compelled to rise to the occasion. Madam Yusador Gaye took charge and for seven years ran the affairs of the GAC; holding on to the fort not necessarily as John Morlu might have done, but maintaining the momentum as established by Morlu and the team.
Prior to the expiration of her tenure, Madam Yusador Gaye officially informed the new administration of George Weah to brace itself for a transition plan by naming her replacement – who would be mentored until her final exit. Weah and his bunch of irresponsible enablers ignored the chain of communications she served in the office of Weah’s Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel McGill.
And then the unfortunate happened amid the passing of Auditor General, Madam Yusador Gaye. Ironically, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs failed miserably to accord the fallen integrity icon a befitting homegoing vis-à-vis a sickening lack of gumption on the part of the President to responsibly mourn a brilliant Auditor General who served her country selflessly.
Conversely, amid a blatant determination aimed at seemingly ignoring the late GAC Auditor General, Yusador Gaye – whose impeccable contributions to national development have left indelible imprints, President Weah, last week celebrated little known Emmanuel Tuloe; the motorcyclist who returned $50,000.00 he had found while performing his motorcycling chores in Nimba County.
Arguably, there is every reason to celebrate the young man for doing what in the small West African nation is out of the ordinary given the harsh socioeconomic realities of life for the ordinary man and woman. Similarly, Weah and his handlers should have accorded Yusador Gaye a befitting homegoing – having accepted the challenge to return home and serve her country, which she did so diligently and dutifully for the greater good of detecting and preventing waste and abuse in public service. The late Madam Yusador Gaye was at the forefront of ‘integrity in our country and let the word go forth that she performed distinctly, uniquely, and remarkably. Emmanuel Tuloe’s historic gesture must have returned $50,000.00 to the proper owner but the late Madam Yusador Gaye’s helped to save the waste and abuse of millions in public resources. Which is greater? You be the judge!
Main photo: President Weah, Emmanuel Tuloe & late Yusador Gaye