Welcome To Liberia Transparency
OBJECTIVES AND VISION
The objective of CENTAL is to institutionalize transparency and accountability in all facets of the Liberia society.
The core objectives shall be;
- To sensitize the Liberian society and various institutions of the need to exhibit transparency and accountability in all their dealings.
- To develop workable programs and projects that will educate people to be more transparent and accountable.
- Campaign actively and creatively in the countering of corruption – which according to Transparency International is defined, as the misuse of public power for personal benefit. (This definition is considered wide enough to include corruption in the Private & Public Sectors- the people being entrusted power). Within this there are two distinct but overlapping areas: international corruption (exemplified in corruption in international business transactions) and corruption at the national level.
- Provide capacity building for NGO’s, PVO’s, local government institutions, churches, schools et cetera on how to manage their meager resources and to be accountable to donors and to their members.
- Evolve a donor evaluation team that will ensure that funds given various groups are adequately accounted for.
- Collaborate with GOL and private business to create more transparent and accountable society.
Understanding Corruption In Liberia
Liberia has gone into historical records as one of the war-torn countries in Africa. It has been ravaged by war, lowered to the humiliating level of misery. The wars fought between 1989 and 2003 were a harbinger of organized crime nourished by dubious factions seeking power for greedy ends. Corruption in Liberia is the fruit of greet made evident by the atrocities of the civil war. Just like is the case with Burundi, Siera Leone, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi, Liberia suffers on the spell of the civil war.
Today, corruption is rank and rife in the country. It is not a surprising situation. The very act of war can be, as stated above, a glaring manifestation of greed, it happens when a few wants to control and use the country’s resources for their personal ends. War divides a country and what follows is always the acute sense of discrimination, the bitter feeling of revenge and the rise in crime. War creates a situation of malaise and disorder which allows criminals the possibility to take the reins, to kill and loot. What Liberia has gone through under the regime of Charles Taylor has been a nightmare of suffering whose wounds continue to fester. The journey towards reconciliation is a daunting challenge that needs an unbiased leadership.
War has brought Liberia into a deep mess of poverty. Where there is poverty, people are ready to anything to live through the day. This explains why crime continues to be the talk of the day in Liberia. The rich grow richer, enriching themselves from the sweats of the poor who become poorer and poorer every day. Those in power continue to manipulate the people, using unethical means to bring relatives and those who belong to their factions into key positions irrespective of their education, political experience and organizational skills. Those who have committed great crimes and swindled the country’s money invest abroad. They build mansions of refuge in Europe and other countries, denying the country the possibility to develop.
The lack of true democracy has also contributed greatly to the rise of corruption in Liberia. Those in power do not want to leave after their term of office. It is true that power corrupts, it has its enticing spell and the sad reality is that most African leaders seem to have fallen helplessly under its spell. The desire to stay in power has been very common with many African leaders. This is also a sign of corruption embedded in the regimes. And there are two reasons why greedy people always want to stay in control. The first is that if they cede power to others, they will be made to pay for their crimes and for swindling. That is why they use corrupt means including foreign aid to stay in power. They lie, they manipulate, they buy protection from the more powerful nations who in turn get their share of the pillage.
The involvement of foreign nations in the rotting and decaying condition of Liberia cannot be brushed over. From the period of the cold war, Liberia has been a toy in the hands of foreign powers where not only dubious investments have been made but equally schemes of impoverishing the nation through the weakness of greedy nationals. The total democratization and liberation of Liberia – the land of the free – would mean a great loss to most European countries who enrich themselves by taking advantage of the demise of the country. Corruption in Liberia cannot be understood but in the light of the troubling political situation caused by the civil war. The sense of the common good needs to be cultivated as a value. Corruption will begin to decline with the true and authentic sense of reconciliation. This is the challenge that awaits the actual leaders of the nation.