Montserrado County District # 9 Representative, Frank Saah Foko has described citizens begging for handouts as a key factor in lawmakers being corrupt.
Speaking to a church congregation in Monrovia, Representative Foko claimed that personal assistance from lawmakers directly to individual electorates is one-factor breeding corruption mainly among members of the Liberian Legislature.
He further that citizens who mount pressure on lawmakers for personal assistance rather than prevailing on them for projects or interventions for the general good of the community are the main source of lawmakers being corrupt, stating that the many requests from such individual members of the public cannot be serviced by the salary they earn as a lawmaker; As a result, they are left with an option of getting additional resources to satisfy their constituents as means of staying in power. Something that usually leads to them adding a line to the budget.
It can be recorded that $3,090,000 USD was added to the 2020/2021 National budget for something they called Legislative engagement; therefore, 30 thousand United States Dollars was disbursed to each lawmaker which the public saw as corruption and was calling on Lawmakers to return the 30 thousand United States Dollars.
Some lawmakers attended to return the money but could not because others said it was legal since it pass through the budget.
There have been reports of corruption among members of the Liberian Legislature and some citizens believed that Representative Foko’s statement further confirms the allegation of corruption in the Legislature.
Representative Saah Foko has cautioned residents of his district to encourage him to do projects that will impact the general population of the district, instead of going for personal interests.