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LIBERIA: OUTGOING OFFICIALS MAKE OFF WITH THE FURNITURE

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MONROVIA, Feb. 1 (IRIN) - Members of Liberia's outgoing transitional government have vacated offices to make way for elected successors, taking their computers, desks, chairs and even carpets with them, civil servants told IRIN o­n Monday.

Ministers, their staff, and parliamentarians made off with a whole gamut of government property, leaving offices bare.

"Here in this, the Capitol Building, some former members of the National Transitional Legislative Assembly took away carpets from the offices they occupied and even desks that the government had bought," said Angie Coleman who works at the parliament building.

Some of the outgoing lawmakers claimed the office furniture and equipment they were whisking away was their own private property, another staff member told IRIN.

In November, the 76-member transitional parliament made up of former rebels and civil society representatives, attempted to pass a law to keep their government issued vehicles.

The move was condemned by transitional government Chairman Gyude Bryant. US Ambassador Donald Booth warned that any official who made off with their jeep would be denied a visa to the United States.

Sirleaf, who at her inauguration o­n Jan. 16 promised to wage a war o­n corruption, has promised an audit to retrieve all looted government assets.

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