Global Witness Welcomes President’s Pledge to Prosecute ‘shady’ Actors in Exxon’s oil Deal

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A view of the Exxon Mobil refinery in Baytown, Texas September 15, 2008. A big chunk of U.S. energy production shuttered by Hurricane Ike could recover quickly amid early indications the storm caused only minor to moderate damage to platforms and coastal refineries. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES)

Global Witness welcomes last week’s commitment by Liberian President George Weah to hold accountable anyone found to have broken the law during the 2013 approval of the sale of oil Block 13 to Exxon.

The President’s pledge came after he received a report from the Special Presidential Review Committee, which was tasked with investigating the Exxon deal. In March, Global Witness published Catch Me if You Can, described how the oil block was tainted by corruption.

In a 17 May release, President Weah stated that, “Anyone held accountable, such person will be dealt with according to the law.”

“It is promising to hear that President Weah is taking the investigation into the 2013 Exxon deal seriously,” said Jonathan Gant, Senior Campaigner at Global Witness, “We urge him to ensure those who broke the law are held to account, whether they are government officials or company representatives.”

A copy of the Committee’s report has not yet been made public, and it is unclear what steps the government will take to act on its recommendations. Global Witness calls on the government to publish the Committee’s report and ensure a thorough, fair investigation into those involved in the 2013 Exxon deal.