Ministry matters

Fraudulent appointment of Honorary Consul backfires on Foreign Office – FrontPageAfrica

MONROVIA – FrontPageAfrica investigation uncovered information about a Serbian national identified as Mr. Aleksander Milojevic who is seeking to be the Honorary Consul of Liberia in the Republic of Serbia.

Deputy Foreign Minister Henry Fahnbulleh reportedly gave the Serbian national the assurance that he would get the job unilaterally without due process.

Minister Fahnbulleh refused to respond to the allegations after receiving two text messages via WhatsApp by FrontPageAfrica to provide his story and what he knows of the charges, even though he has read the messages.

But according to the documents in possession of this document, the Serbian national wrote to the then Acting Minister Henry B. Fahnbulleh on August 20, 2020 and applied for the post of Honorary Consul of the Republic of Liberia in the Republic of Serbia.

In Mr. Milojevic’s communication of August 20, 2020, he expressed his interest and assured Minister Fahnbulleh of his deep interest in furthering the interests of the Liberian government in Serbia, through diplomatic means that will enhance cultural and economic opportunities for Liberians. .

He said, “I am the owner of the company Blumen Market Doo which has been importing flowers for 20 years in Serbia”. “We are also in the business of importing, exporting and selling cut and pot flowers with 1000 permanent customers and currently cover the entire market of the Republic of Serbia.

With this information and knowing the economic envelope involved, the Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Henry B. Fahnbulleh acknowledged receipt of Mr. Aleksander Milojevic’s letter on August 27, 2020 with ref: RL/MFA/2-2/323-AMFA010930/’20. In Minister Fahnbulleh’s acknowledgment letter, he assured Mr. Aleksander Milojevic that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Liberia was exercising due diligence in reviewing his candidacy and would get back to him when a final decision is made. socket.

A subsequent note verbale, an official channel for diplomatic exchange between two countries, was issued on September 10, 2020 with the reference: RL/MFA/2-2/351-AMFA02005501’20 to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Serbia, Belgrade in which the Government of the Republic of Liberia has informed of its intention to appoint the Serbian businessman Mr. Aleksander Milojevic as Honorary Consul of Liberia in the Republic of Serbia.

The note verbale also requested the willingness of the government of Serbia to expedite the appointment of Mr. Aleksander Milojevic.

According to the survey, there are established policy guidelines at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the appointment of honorary consuls outside Liberia.

Our investigation revealed that, in accordance with the Department of Foreign Affairs Honorary Consul Regulations, all applicants for an Honorary Consul license are reviewed by the Foreign Service Committee which includes the Department of Foreign Affairs: (Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs-Chairman, Deputy Minister of Legal Affairs Foreign Affairs-Member, Deputy Minister of Administration-Member, Inspector General of Foreign Service-Member, Deputy Foreign Minister-Secretary, National Security Agency NSA-Member , the Ministry of Justice, the Office of the Solicitor General and the Office of the President of the Republic of Liberia.

Our investigation has reliably established that the application to become Honorary Consul requires that the candidate for Honorary Consul license write to the Minister of Foreign Affairs expressing interest, the Minister of Foreign Affairs will send this communication to the Foreign Service Committee, a member of the Committee, the NSA will conduct appropriate due diligence on the claimant to determine his character and other related matters surrounding his operations.

The procedure also requires the NSA to submit its findings to the committee, which then makes a decision for review or rejection.

The Committee chaired by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs submits its report to the Minister of Foreign Affairs. If the report exonerates the candidate, the Minister of Foreign Affairs writes to the President to seek his approval for the nomination.

After endorsement of the candidate by the President of the Republic of Liberia, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, on the instruction of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, then writes to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the requesting country the deposition of his government in order to facilitate the nomination with the attached curriculum vitae of the candidate.

Upon the response of the requesting country, the Chief of Protocol of the Republic of Liberia will prepare the commission for the newly appointed Honorary Consul while the Legal Affairs Assistant will request the Director of Passports to issue the Diplomatic Passport to the newly appointed Honorary Consul.

FrontPageAfrica’s investigation revealed that the then Acting Foreign Minister did not apply standard procedure, but informed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Serbia of the requesting country through a Note Verbale bearing reference: RL/MFA/2-2/351- AMFA0200550/’20 and dated September 10, 2020 of the Government of Liberia’s intention to appoint Mr. Aleksandar Milojevic as Honorary Consul of the Republic of Liberia to the Republic of Serbia.

Acting Minister Fahnbulleh did not revert to the standard procedural channel in his exchange with the Serbian businessman, but with the aggressive intent to dupe, mislead, frustrate and exploit the man Serbian businessman using his position as Acting Foreign Minister, as well as to impress the Serbian businessman and the government of Serbia that the government of Liberia was totally involved.

Our investigation also learned that not only Deputy Minister Hon. Henry B. Fahnbulleh allegedly exchanged fraudulent and criminal communications with Mr. Milojevic and his government, but received a huge sum of money in the amount of $25,000 from Mr. Milojevic as well as gifts from Mr. Milojevic on behalf of the president. of the Republic of Liberia that the report says he did not hand over to the President.

After several months of waiting for his letter of appointment, his diplomatic passport and his commission from the Liberian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, our investigation revealed that Mr. Milojevic had expressed his frustration, but Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh allegedly blamed the Minister for Foreign Affairs Dee-Maxwell Kemayah of obstructing the process after Mr Milojevic met all the requirements of the law but our investigation heard that on such matters, if the need arises, the Minister of Foreign Affairs will deal strictly with the responsible committee.

Our sources in the Foreign Service also informed that due to the ongoing reform at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, all selections for the Honorary Consul have been suspended.

Our investigation also revealed that Deputy Foreign Minister Fahnbulleh allegedly suggested that Mr. Milojevic pay a week-long visit to Liberia with the aim of seeking investment opportunities, but to enable him to meet with other influential senior Weah government officials who may be able to intervene with regarding arranging a meeting with Mr. Milojevic and President Weah to resolve the issue of his appointment.

Based on this phase two of Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh’s alleged criminal involvement with Mr. Milojevic, a planned visit was arranged. Mr. Milojevic would have asked for a budget to facilitate the visit of the plan. A budget was reportedly sent by Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh.

Our sources suggested that the director of human resources of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Emmanuel Redd, received the transfer by money transfer.

According to our investigation, Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh did not inform the ministry’s senior management team about his activities with the Serbian businessman.

The investigation further revealed that the current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Dee-Maxwell Saah Kemayah, Sr., upon taking office in the ministry, inherited a massive passport scandal which ridiculed the image of the ministry.

To restore the ministry’s badly damaged image and create a credible working environment to improve best practices, the minister organized a three-day retreat to identify challenges and design coherent policy measures to address them.

The four categories of the Liberian biometric ECOWAS passport were grossly abused during the passport scandal at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Again, Deputy Fahnbulleh is in the business of soliciting money from people and authorizing privileged passports in the civil servant and service categories, our sources hinted.

The FPA investigation also noted that during the period, Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh acted before Minister Kemayah took more than 60% of privileged passports, i.e. (the passports of service, official and diplomatic were issued to the wrong people.

However, some Liberian foreign service actors are calling on the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) to investigate all passport endorsements by Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh when he acted as minister prior to the minister’s appointment. Kemayah as a means of authentication.

Many have suggested clues to consider for an investigation Letter requesting the passport, investigating who the passport was issued to and including requesting the entity’s payroll to verify if one is legally employed by that entity.

Going forward, the FPA investigation also learned that Deputy Minister Fahnbulleh allegedly took money from a number of people inside and outside the ministry with assurances to name them. in the foreign service, this situation has caused serious tension in the department, giving the impression that the current minister has rejected appointments of foreign service officers in the field