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Another ‘Stay-Home’ Protest Begin Today

-But Liberia Chamber of Commerce Opposes
The Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia Inc. (PATEL), a conglomerate of street sellers, market women and men and store owners in the country has called for total shut down of businesses in the country in protest against what it calls government’s uncontrollable imposition of taxes.The group say taxes placed on goods and services directly affects ordinary Liberian business people and therefore stated that businesses will be shut down until government sees reasons to curtail the burden placed on ordinary people.
Few months ago, similar strike took place but was called after government pledged to reduce taxes that directly affect the people.
PATEL in a radio statement say, few weeks after a meeting with government, it has failed to live up to the agreement. PATEL therefore called on all its sympathizers to stay home until government can see reason to alleviate the suffering of the people.
But in a counter statement issued yesterday, The Executive Council and Members of the Liberia Chamber of Commerce (LCC) disagree with the action of PATEL.
LCC says its aattention has been drawn to the recent public announcement by the Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia Inc. (PATEL) calling on the Business Community to shut down operations beginning Monday, April 10, 2017, if certain demands are not addressed.
The LCC in the statement pointed out that recent history has shown, that disagreements between Government’s Agencies and the Business Community are not resolved by resort to strike, and other similar activities intended to force the Government’s Authority to take action desired by the business sector.
In fact, the LCC said the results and conditions turn out to be far more severe and damaging. Our economy and peaceful environment for the conduct of business is fragile, as a result of global economic downturns and inadequate domestic infrastructure and capacity.
The LCC acknowledges that some of the concerns raised by PATEL need attention, but urges PATEL to take advantage of the mechanisms and systems available for peaceful advocacy and dialogue with the Government, such that in the process, we do not lose what we have, no matter how small.
Therefore LCC says in the spirit of peace and reconciliation, especially in this period heading to the scheduled national elections, it appeal to all of its members and other business persons, and associations to refrain from engaging in any demonstration, strike, closure of business, or acts of violence at any time during the coming days, weeks, and months.
The statement says appeal is being made to the public following an urgent meeting between the Ministry of Justice, and representatives of the Liberia Chamber of Commerce (LCC), and other Liberian business organizations.

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All Liberia Party Standard Bearer Benoni Urey speaking to media executives at his residence in Careysburg.

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