Senate to Probe Skyrocketing Currency Exchange Rate

MONROVIA, Montserrado – The Liberian Senate has mandated its committees on ways, means, finance, and banking and currency to probe into the accelerating depreciation of the Liberian dollar against the U.S. dollar currency and the resulting adverse effect on the economy.

The Senate took the decision on Tuesday, May 21 following a communication from Lofa’s Senator George Tengbeh requesting the Senate to invite the country’s economic management team, headed by Finance Minister Samuel Tweah and the management of the Central Bank of Liberia, to speak on mechanisms they were instituting against the increasing exchange rate.

While the Central Bank’s exchange rate is 183 Liberian dollars to 1 U.S. dollar, at many foreign exchange bureaus across Monrovia, the rate varies from 185 to 190 Liberian dollars to a U.S. dollar.

“The high increase in the United States dollars against our own Liberian dollar is causing serious impediment to ordinary Liberian citizens and the current state of the Liberian economy,” Tengbeh said.

Maryland’s Senator Gblebo Brown sided with the Lofa lawmaker’s request.  Brown added that the economic management team also needed to provide explanations on reports of the investigations conducted into the alleged mission L$16 billion and the General Auditing Commission’s report on the US$25 million mop-up funds.

“The Economic Management Team should be made to explain to the Liberian people the two reports, including the recent GAC report,” he said

However, Grand Gedeh’s Sen. Alfonso Gaye said it would be fair for Tengbeh’s communication to first be presented to the appropriate committees who could then report to the general body on Tuesday, May 28 with recommendations on the way forward.

Tengbeh’s communication was then forwarded to the Committee on Ways Means, Finance and the Committee on Banking and Currency.

Featured photo by Zeze Ballah

Ida Reeves

Ida Reeves is a senior student at the University of Liberia studying Mass Communications and Sociology. She graduated from the Young Political Leadership School and has worked in the past for Farbric Radio, Freedom Radio, and Frontier newspaper.

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