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PATEL Decries Business Abandonment

By S. Siapha Mulbah
Liberian businesses under the banner ‘Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia’ (PATEL) have expressed dismay over government’s abandonment of Liberian owned businesses.
The conglomeration of different business personnel said the government has shown no interest in helping to build the country’s economy through impacting local business people that could save the nation from so many disadvantages.
Addressing a news conference in Monrovia over the weekend, the president of the Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia, Dominic Nimely said the business community is of no significance to the government with specific emphasis on the Executive and Legislative branches.
Nimely said President Weah’s last State of the Nation Address refused to reveal at least a short line that highlighted the interest of locals who have decided to contribute to the growth and development of the country through business.
“We have been forgotten by the government as Liberian owned business people. The President’s SONA had nothing about the business community which is the greatest problem we are faced with. The lawmakers at the Legislature do not seek our interest and now the President has lost focus on us totally,” he asserted.
He explained that when the Liberian President ascended to the Executive Mansion; he disclosed that Liberians will not serve as spectators in their own economy; but now, there is nearly no more space for Liberians to get into the economy.
According to him, the problem of Liberia as a country is not tied to the workings of a President, but hugely settled on the roof of the Capitol Building where Representatives and Senators should assemble to do their best in protecting and crafting new laws.
“The elections we do as citizens is the outcome we are faced with. Liberia’s problem is not the President from days in memorial. The Capitol Building is the main source of the situations and conditions we are faced with,” he intimated.
PATEL’s president added that access to finance is the most common challenge to Liberian owned businesses as they call on the government to aid them with loans that will beef up the business community for all Liberians.
Nimely said, “We crafted a document about two years ago when the Liberia Business Association (LIBA) engaged business groups and nearly every union complained of access to finance. So, we want the government to put in its budget U$50 million for Liberian businesses to be empowered.”
Meanwhile, the Chair on Trade and Commerce at the Liberia Business community also disclosed that in the coming days, business people are going to assemble at the grounds of the Capitol Building to petition lawmakers for their rights and other interests of Liberian businesses.
According to him, LIBA and other partners in the business space have decided to go after lawmakers so that oversight and adequate representation can be made as interventions for the country.
“We are going to give a final petition to this government through the Legislature in the coming days. In said petition Liberian businesses have again woken up to ask for their just empowerments from the government with an ultimatum of one month,” Nimely added.
He threatened that businesses will take unspecified actions after the one-month ultimatum if the government fails to address the concerns raised in the petition that will be presented to the Legislature.

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