By Lincoln G. Peters
Africa-Press – Liberia. Movement for Progressive Change Presidential Candidate, Simeone Freeman says digitization and privatization will be his top priorities if elected President to stimulate the economy and governance.
He says for far too long governments after governments have failed to look in the areas of digitalization and privatization, something, he believes has caused Liberia to be poor and underdeveloped both in governance and economic growth.
Speaking Monday in Monrovia, the opposition politician promised that an MPC government will diversify the country’s economy with particular attention on privatization and digitalization.
“Liberia is poor with high poverty because we have refused to diversify. We will ensure that major sectors of the Liberian economy are privatized to speed economic growth and recovery. We will also look at digitalization to mitigate corruption because you will not need people to have transactions and also there is nothing about government that will be hidden”, he says.
Mr. Freeman underscores that Liberia needs people of expertise to solve problems in order to prevent doing the same thing again and again, which he says is killing Liberia.
He indicates that telecommunications sector under his administration will be privatized, but in a different manner where private companies will not be the ones to construct towers, but rather another private company that will be paid fees to maintain such facilities for effectiveness and efficiency.
“We will also give the health sector, education, and road construction to the private sector, while we do little maintenance and supervisor role. These are things that will help us. We want to run a very small government but efficient and effective to meet the wants and demands of all citizens.” Mr. Freeman explains.
He believes that privatization of the economy will create numerous job opportunities for Liberians because there will be factories and companies across the country.
According to him, when President George M. Weah came to power, the government cut down workers’ salaries after they employed over fifteen thousand individuals.
He argues that government should divert its attention to private-sector investment to enable Liberians gain employment in the private sector instead of putting the country in huge debt.
“Empowering the workforce of our country to have the capacity and knowledge to work in factories and companies will be our objective. Liberia has one of the highest rainforests in the world and so when we diversify the economy to factories, instead of export, we will do more. Liberia has the solution to its poverty and unemployment issues because we have the land and rainforest. We just need to move to factories.”
He says moving the economy to production will reduce prostitution and disadvantaged youth across the country, especially huge number of motorcyclists plying the streets.