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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Liberia: Missing Diamond Saga Reawakens

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By: Zac T. Sherman

Gbarpolu County Senator Amara Mohammed Konneh has disclosed the sudden disappearance of a diamond at the Ministry of Mines and Energy.

The diamond, according to the lawmaker, was found in his county and was brought to Monrovia for onward processing during the administration of President George Weah.

Upon hearing the information, the Minister of Mines and Energy Designate Wilmot Paye vowed to reawaken investigation into the sudden disappearance of the diamond.

Minister Designate Wilmot Paye was informed by Senator Konneh of Gbarpolu that the missing diamond has had no remedy up to present.

Senator Konneh who sought the Minister Designee’s commitment to address the issue said the disappearance of the mineral after it was brought in Monrovia is grave and needs urgent attention.

According to Senator Konneh, “There have been no returns to the county where the mineral was extracted”.

Minister Wilmot Paye who advised privatizing the energy sector however expressed commitment to probe into the matter if confirmed.

Speaking at his confirmation hearing on Wednesday at the Capitol Building, the minister designate meanwhile vowed to take robust measures in fostering regulations and compliances in the sector.

Among other things, the ministerial Nominee outlined reviewing of licenses is paramount to bring vibrancy to the extractive industry.

We will determine the legitimacy and illegitimacy of various licenses and take appropriate measures. We are informed that Class C License meant for Liberians are in the hands of Foreigners” Pay said.

Meanwhile, Paye promised that shareholding will allow for the government and its people to have dividends and returns on investment from their own mineral resources.

“We will take requisite measures and advise the government on how to become shareholders”, the minister designate said.

Pay argues that the energy sector has the propensity to generate more revenue that will have trigger-down effects on other sectors if handled carefully.

The nominee recounted the system of joint convention which brought more benefits to Liberians as compared to the public private partnership.

The statesman who is seeking confirmation told senators on Capitol Building that Public Private Partnership system concession agreements have not met the actualization of benefits needed.

Wilmot Paye said he will work to make the sector productive, thus giving the government through the legislature to take actions towards shareholding.

The minister designate noted: “Liberia having shares in the mining sector is something to think on and we will advise what best approach to take”.

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