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Weah Requests US$2M For COVID-19 Response

President George M. Weah is again requesting the Legislature to appropriate funds from the national budget to respond appropriately to covid-19 resurgence.
The funds when made available will assist in the fight against the pandemic thereby bringing the government some relief in its effort to curtail the surge in the cases.
The amount which is in the tune of US$2,000,000 according to the President, is expected to be used for the enforcement of Health and Security regulations and protocols in confronting the new wave of the covid-19 variant across the country.
In his communication read in plenary yesterday, the Liberian leader mentioned that his decision was triggered after being informed by health authorities about the alarming increase in the number of covid-19 cases resulting from a new strain of the virus in the country.
According to him, it is alarming to note that since the third wave began, from May 16 to June 15, 2021, there has been a peak of 256 confirmed cases of the virus in the country, emphasizing that it is understood that the new covid-19 variant is even more deadly than the strains experienced during that previous two waves.
The Liberian Chief Executive disclosed that he was also informed by Health Minister, Wilhelmina Jallah that several hospitals are now filled with residents experiencing breathing difficulties and that there were 50 other patients in the treatment unit, 33 of whom are severely ill and the need for funds cannot be overemphasized.
He also alarmed that there have been about 67,437 persons who have been immunized with the first doses of the covid-19 vaccine out of the over 4.5 million Liberians, stressing, “This is far more alarming than a year ago.”
“Accordingly, I have already convened an emergency cabinet meeting to review the full scale of this concerning situation and to seek an appropriate plan of action to be adopted by the government to address this threatening situation. Henceforth, we cannot wait until all of our people die; so we must therefore ‘Act and Act Now,” President Weah cautioned.
He then directed the Ministries of Health and Justice to formulate new regulations and protocols that will assist in curbing the spread of the disease adding, “They are to be strictly observed by all citizens and residents within our borders and will be rigorously enforced by the security forces, where necessary.”
Meanwhile, following the reading of the President’s communication, the plenary forwarded the instrument to its committee on Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning for advisement with the mandate to report to that body within one week.
However, Liberia has now recorded 3,265 total numbers of confirmed cases with 933 active cases, while the total number of deaths has now hit 110 followed by 2,222 total recoveries as of Tuesday, June 22, 2021.
With this alarming rate of the covid-19 cases in the country, many legislative pundits are now expressing their skepticism as to whether this amount being requested for by President Weah will not end up like the most talked about US$25 million appropriated for the unaccounted stimulus package.
They are also calling on the Legislature to now wisely use their three cardinal functions ranging from Lawmaking, Oversight and Representation to ensure that proper mechanisms are put into place in order for the money to be used for its intended purposes as outlined by President Weah.

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