Robert Sirleaf is widely considered the right hand man to the aging African President and perhaps the proxy leader of the West African Nation, influencing major public decisions on mineral and oil concession agreements.
He is simultaneously serving as Senior Advisor to his mother and Chair of the National Oil Company of Liberia controlling millions of corporate funds with relatively no evidence of accountability and transparency. There are reports he has hidden shares in several offshore oil blocks.
The young sirleaf could face formal corruption charges should he fail to establish that he legally acquire the fortune, FBI sources said. An American Lawyer (name withheld) serving the legal interest of Mr. Sirleaf said he will prove any corruption allegation groundless.
Robert Sirleaf has been accused by former Speaker Edwin Melvin Snowe of using Foundations and Trust Funds as Special Purpose Entities to circumvent the US Patriot Act and also to amass significant amount of funds given to Mr. Sirleafâ€™s many trust funds and foundation by oil companies and concessions companies doing business with the Government of Liberia.
Mr. Sirleaf sued Jefferson Koijee, the National Youth Wing Leader of the major political party in Liberia, the Congress for Democratic Change, because Mr. Koijee accused Mr. Sirleaf of becoming a billion in years through his position as Senior Advisor to the President and also Chairman of NOCAL. Amongst the accusation leveled against Mr. Sirleaf by Mr. Koijee and now Speaker Edwin Melvin Snowe is that US$10 million social contribution fund from Chevron, was given to Mr. Sirleaf through his Robert A. Sirleaf foundation.
Calls for President Sirleaf to remove her son as head of Oil Company has fallen on deaf ears as Sirleaf ’s fellow Liberian Nobel laureate Leymah Gbowee, says she is disappointed with fellow winner Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberia’s president. Laureate Gbowee accused President of practicing nepotism and not doing enough to fight corruption, as well as reconcile Liberians. Gbowee resigned from the Government as head of the National Reconciliation Initiative.
Gbowee, who helped Johnson Sirleaf get reelected to a second term last year, asked why the Liberian president’s three sons all have lucrative government posts and called for Johnson Sirleaf, who became Africa’s first elected female head of state in 2005, to make one of her sons step down from his job as chairman of the state-owned National Oil Company (NOCAL).”The public (in Liberia) has spoken, these are the people who voted for (Johnson Sirleaf),” she said of the outcry in Liberia over the appointment.
International organizations have also questioned the wisdom of the President appointing her son as Chairman of NOCAL, giving the nature of corrupt African regimes doing the same.
Like other African leaders President who have amassed wealth using their parents influence, Mr. Robert Sirleaf holds 4 positions in Liberia: Chairman of NOCAL, Senior Advisor to the President, Chairman of First International Bank, and UNESCO Representative. He is also believed to be the main recruiting agency of the Government, wherein he hires cronies and fires perceived enemies.
Liberia has a history of appointing presidentâ€™s family members in top position or family members creating foundations, trust funds and business to siphon funds from the State. Former President William R. Tolbert family members in Government included his son AB Tolbert, his brother Frank Tolbert and his infamous brother, Stephen Tolbert, who was appointed Minister of Finance but was killed in sudden plane crash.