Liberia: CBL Quietly Appoints New Executive Director

Monrovia, Liberia – April 3, 2019: The Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) has a new Executive Director.

Jay Gbleh-bo Brown of CBL
Jay Gbleh-bo Brown of CBL

He is a bank insider who was promoted from the position of Deputy Director of Insurance in the Regulations and Supervision to the position of Chief of Staff equivalent to the rank of Executive Director.

A press statement issued on Tuesday by the country’s Central Bank says Mr. Jay Gbleh-bo Brown has held other positions at the bank including Deputy Director for Policy & Regulation (2017), Assistant Director – Regulations & Supervision Department (2015-2016), and Bank Examiner (2009-2014).

Mr. Brown has also served as Chair of the Financial Inclusion Working Group and represented CBL at various regional and international meetings, including the statutory meetings of the West African Monetary Zone and the IMF/World Bank Spring.

The CBL says his duties will include ensuring “that all meetings, programs and other activities of the Executive Governor are properly arranged, and appropriate follow-ups made, while as Deputy Officer-in-Charge for Operations, he has the authority to co-sign with the Officer-in-Charge for Operations on CBL’s operational and administrative matters.”

Building of Central Bank of Liberia (CBL)
Building of Central Bank of Liberia (CBL)

The appointment of the Bank official follows the disastrous recruitment attempt earlier this year of a ruling Congress For Democratic Change (CDC) party political appointee Hamed Sifonic , formerly known as Sidiki Fofana.  He was appointed as Executive Director.

But the West Africa Journal Magazine, through extensive investigation, discovered Sifonic submitted fraudulent academic credentials to the Management of the Central Bank which also conducted its due diligence Since Sifonic was still in his probationary period, the Bank quietly revoked his appointment. The position had been vacant since until now with the appointment of the new Chief of Staff and Deputy Officer-in-Charge for Operations Mr. Brown.

The Liberian Central Bank’s image has been battered by a major scandal which it still trying to recover from. Two individuals, including a former Governor and a current Deputy, were indicted, arrested and detained briefly following the release of two forensic audits in which they were allegedly implicated. Former Bank Governor Milton Weeks and Deputy Governor Charles Sirleaf are out on bail pending prosecution by the Government of Liberia.

The new Bank official Mr. Brown’s appointment takes immediate effect, the press statement said.

By Emmanuel Abalo

West African Journal Magazine


Liberian National Rhoda Weeks-Brown Appointed As General Counsel of IMF

IMF Chief Christine Lagarde

Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), today announced her intention to appoint Rhoda Weeks-Brown as the IMF’s General Counsel and Director of the Legal Department.

The IMF, in a Press Statement issued Tuesday, says Ms. Weeks-Brown succeeds Mr. Sean Hagan whose retirement was announced previously. She is expected to begin her work in this capacity on September 17, 2018.

“Throughout her 21-year career with the IMF, Ms. Weeks-Brown has contributed to virtually all aspects of the institution’s work. In addition to a sharp legal mind and deep legal experience, she brings a comprehensive perspective on the Fund’s role and the challenges facing our members in today’s rapidly changing economic and financial environment.,” Ms. Lagarde said.

IMF Newly Appointed General Counsel Rhoda Weeks Brown from Liberia.

During her career in the Fund’s Legal Department, Ms. Weeks-Brown worked on a wide range of country and policy issues. She was particularly involved in leading the work related to the revamp of the Fund’s General Resources Account (GRA) lending toolkit and the transformation of the architecture of facilities for low-income countries.

She also contributed to the design of a new income model for the Fund adopted in 2008, the 2008 and 2010 quota and governance reforms, and the articulation of the Fund’s institutional view on capital flows.

IMF Logo

In her role as Deputy General Counsel, she was a key member of the Legal Department’s management team, helping to guide all aspects of the department’s work. Most recently, Ms. Weeks-Brown has served as Deputy Director of the Fund’s Communications Department, where she has played a key role in development of the Fund’s communications strategy and its positioning on key issues, and also had oversight of communications related to Europe, Africa and previously Asia.

A national of Liberia, Ms. Weeks-Brown joined the Fund’s Legal Department in 1997 and rose through the ranks to become Deputy Legal Counsel in 2010.

She then joined the Fund’s Communications Department in 2012 as Deputy Director. Before joining the IMF, Ms. Weeks-Brown was in private practice in the United States.

She received her Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School in 1991, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Howard University. IMF release concluded.

IMF Press Statement

Lenus Perkins – A Liberian Environmental Executive Gets Top Post on University Board in Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama USA

The Governor of the U.S. State of Alabama Ms. Kay Ivey recently appointed three new members to the University of South Alabama Board of Trustees.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey

According to statement issued on September 29, 2017 by the University, the new appointments include Mr. Lenus M. Perkins, a resident of Birmingham and Program Director at Bhate Environmental Associates.

Mr. Perkins, born in Liberia, West Africa, matriculated at the University of South Alabama following acceptance as an international student and graduated from the College of Engineering in 1991 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He began his career as a staff engineer at Thompson Engineering in Mobile before joining Bhate Environmental Associates in 1992.

Board Member Lenus Perkins
Board Member Mr. Lenus Perkins

As Director of Programs for Bhate, he is the direct report for all federal and commercial program managers, responsible for domestic and overseas environmental remediation, demolition, fuels, compliance, and construction contracts with capacity totaling more than $5 billion. Perkins’ 26 years of environmental consulting include more than 20 years of project and program management experience in environmental, remediation, fuel storage tank system closures, removal, installation, repairs and upgrades, remedial investigations, remedial/corrective plan development, system installation/construction, site restoration and cleanup, compliance, pollution prevention, and other investigations and remedial activities under various federal and state regulatory programs.

Perkins has received the Patriot Award from the Office of the Secretary of Defense Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve for his contribution to national security and protecting liberty and freedom by supporting employee participation in America’s National Guard and Reserve Force.

He is on the executive committee of the Bong Education Center Alumni Association, which serves to meet the needs of students in Liberia, West Africa; a board member of the Birmingham Zoning Board of Adjustment; a member of the Highlands School Foundation board of trustees; and a member of the board of directors of Navigate Affordable Housing Partners in Birmingham.

University of South Alabama Logo
University of South Alabama Logo

In this prestigious and high profile position, Perkins is the first Liberian to serve as a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of South Alabama. His appointment became effective on October 1, 2017.

By Emmanuel Abalo

West African Journal Magazine