We Welcome Probe Into Passport Scam


The Inquirer
Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

Posted June 18, 2004

For years now, there have been persistent reports about Liberian passports found in the hands of wrong individuals. In the past, it was even alleged that some officials of government were marketing the passports, especially the diplomatic ones to individuals for financial reasons and not because they merit such.

As a result, there were reports that the matter was being investigated, but nothing, concrete was heard about such probes but the passports continue to be in the hands of unscrupulous individuals. Besides, there were measures taken to control this ugly situation, but those measures proved inefficacious.

Again, fresh and latest reports say some individuals are possessing Liberian diplomatic passports and posing as so-called Honorable Consul Generals representing Liberia’s missions abroad. This latest report concerning Liberian diplomatic passports being in the wrong hands was raised with the Chairman of the NTGL Charles Gyude Bryant by some European nations when he paid a recent visit to that continent.

Because of the seriousness of the matter, Chairman Bryant has reportedly ordered a probe into the matter. it is our understanding that the order was given yesterday during a cabinet meeting at the Executive Mansion.

Indeed, we wholeheartedly welcome the Chairman’s desire to probe this matter especially so when there are reports that some of those individuals in possession of these passports are involved in criminal and dubious activities abroad, a situation which will further worsen the
damaged image of the country outside.
It is an open secret that Liberia’s image abroad is negative because of bad governance in the past. Therefore, let the passport issue be treated with the highest degree of seriousness to weed out those criminals and unscrupulous individuals abroad who are dealing and in possession of Liberian diplomatic passports.

Unlike in the past, let this probe make a difference. This should not be business as usual. We urge the NTGL Chairman to put his feet on the ground relative to this issue. The passports of those criminals and unscrupulous individuals must be immediately revoked. Hence, we wholeheartedly welcome the probe into the passport scandal.

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by The Inquirer newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.