MONROVIA LIBERIA – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has clarified the recent suspension of the issuance of Laissez-Passer to Liberians.
Assistant Foreign Minister for Public Affairs Sylvester Pewee said the suspension was put in place as a result of the international public health threats pose by the outbreak of the Corona Virus.
According to him, the suspension will allow the Immigration to track the ports of origin for passengers coming to Liberia.
Pewee said the move is in support of preventive measures put in place by the government through the Ministry of Health and the national Public Health Institute.
“The reason we suspended the Laissez-Passer is to take some appropriate health mechanism. The corona virus outbreak is of international concern. Traveling with laissez-passer makes it difficult for our border security and immigration to actually track where you are from but with the passport, we will determine where you are from” the Assistant Foreign Minister added.
The recent suspension has been greeted with misunderstanding in the public with many suggesting that the move is meant to target perceived political opponents of the government.
But in his clarification Monday, Minister Pewee said the issuance of Laissez-Passer is an emergency issue which is at the discretion of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. “People who are complaining about this issue cannot say we are not issuing Liberian passports. We make the determination about laissez-passer under emergency circumstances and this will remain in place until the crisis has subsided a little” he noted.
Pewee said all the active 26 Diplomatic Missions of Liberia have been informed about the government’s latest on the laissez-passer issuance.
The Liberian Government decision will remain in place until threats of the Corona Virus is significantly reduced.