11 ‘Marginalized’ Lawmkers Fight Back

first_imgFollowing the removal of the leadership and members of the House’s Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning Committee, who are considered Pro-Tyler Lawmakers, former chairman Rep. Moses Kollie said their rights were violated and is demanding immediate reinstatement.The Lofa County District # 5 Representative and ten others lodged a complaint for ‘declaratory judgment’ against Deputy Speaker Hans Barchue, Acting Presiding Officer of the House of Representatives. The eleven, claiming marginalization because they were ejected as members of the House’s Finance Committee, believe their rights were violated in accordance with the House’s rules and procedures. A declaratory judgment determines whether or not someone has a legal right to action.Declaratory Judgment According to the Writ of Summons of the Declaratory Judgment, Deputy Speaker Barchue and others are commanded to appear before the Sixth Judicial Circuit, which is the Civil Law Court for Montserrado, before Judge Yussif Kaba on Monday September 19. Rep. Kollie and others argued that under Chapter 43.1 of the Civil Procedure Law, “Courts of record within their respective jurisdictions shall have power to declare rights, status, and other legal relations whether or not further relief is or could be claimed. “No action or objection or proceeding shall be objected on ground that a declaratory judgment is prayed for, and such declaration shall have the force and effect of final judgment.” The petitioners (Rep. Kollie and others) claimed that under Article 38 as found on page 26 of the Liberian Constitution, each House shall establish its own committees and subcommittees. Rep. Kollie, in his petition, argued that the Committee on Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning is among the Statutory Committees under the House’s Rule 56, which is headed by the petitioner. “Under Rule 54 of the House’s Rules, all committees’ chairpersons and memberships shall serve for three years, but only the chairpersons and co-chairpersons are subjects to removal by 2/3 majority vote of the membership of the House for a cause,” the petition said. “Because petitioners contend… that the respondent herein, in violation of Rule 54 of the House, the respondent are replacing members of the statutory committee members, whereas petitioners served for only one year and six months.” It added: “And also because petitioners submit… that Rule 53 of the House states that Ways, Means and Finance and Peace and National Reconciliation shall consist of one member from each of the fifteen counties, and shall serve for three years, but the Respondents disregarded Rule 53 and began appointing its own supporters, disregarding other Counties in gross violation of Rule 53 of the House.”New CommitteeOn Thursday, September 1, a new Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning Committee was appointed by Deputy Speaker Barchue in the wake of the in-house wrangling, and sacked and replaced eleven of the 15-members on the House Finance Committee.The chairman is Rep. Prince Moye (Bong County District # 2), vice chairman Rep. Jeremiah Koung (Nimba County), and members Rep. Julius Berrian (Montserrado County); Rep. Julia Wiah (Lofa County); Rep. Haja Siryon (Bomi County); Rep. Gabriel Smith (Grand Bassa County); Rep. Jefferson Kanmoh (Sinoe County) and Rep. Isaac Roland (Maryland County). The rest are Rep. Aaron Vincent (Grand Cape Mount County); Rep. Morais Waylee (Grand Gedeh County); Rep. Opee Roland Cooper (Margibi County); Rep. Numennie Bartekwa (Grand Kru County); Rep. Johnson Chea (River Gee County); Rep. Alfred Koiwood (Gbapolu County) and Rep. Byron Zeahway (Rivercess County). The selection of the committee was made in the Joint Chambers, predicated upon a motion from Montserrado County Rep. Edwin M. Snowe on Thursday, August 25, mandating the Rep. Kollie’s Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning (in the main chambers) Committee to resume budget hearing on Monday, August 29.However, the Committee failed to resume the budget hearing, which according to sources was due to the intensive division among lawmakers, and of the parallel sessions, which have also spilled over to the Senate.Budget Hearing ResumesNonetheless, Chairman Kollie resumed hearing on the Expenditure Component of the 2016/17 Draft National Budget, which is expected to end on Friday, September 16, while sources said the budget may be endorsed on either the 20th or 22nd of September.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Alfalit Liberia Shares Independence Gifts to WIPNET Chapters

first_imgWIPNET Gbarnga Women Celebrate receiving Alflait Independence Day GiftAs part of Alfalit’s International Liberia’s activities in observance of the country’s 171st Independence Anniversary, the organization has donated 25Kg bags of rice and assorted food items to over 800 women, who are from the  Women in Peace Building Network (WIPNET) residing in five of the 15 counties.Many of the women, who benefited from Alfalit’s gesture, were in the age range of 50 and living in “extreme poverty.”On the distribution list, women from Montserrado County received 313 bags of rice; Bomi County, 100 bags; Grand Bassa County, 50 bags; Bong County, 294 bags; and Margibi County, 40 bags. Other items donated included gallons of vegetable oil, onions and beans.This year’s donation, which is the largest of Alfalit’s goodwill gesture, is carried out twice a year — during the festive season of July 26, Liberia’s Independence Day, and in December during the Christmas season.Reverend Emmanuel Giddings, Alfalit-Liberia Country Director, said that the donation is meant to help the women, especially those residing in poverty stricken communities, to sustain their families during the Independence Day celebrations.“Festive days are times for all people to be happy and not time for one to sit and worry about what to eat or wear. So this donation can help.  Our work is not to distribute food to people, but to teach them to read and write, but we are doing this to make you happy this July 26.  The donation to WIPNET is part of Alfalit’s corporate social responsibility and continuous support to WIPNET as well as to poor and underprivileged women.“Although the country is now peaceful and people are moving on with their lives, Alfalit International Liberia still appreciates the role of the WIPNET Women in helping to restore peace to Liberia during the civil war, and we feel by doing this is just to show them that we have not forgotten them,” Marie Morris, Alfalit Field Monitor, said at the start of the donation in Kakata, Margibi County, and Gbarnga, Bong County.Receiving the donation in Gbarnga, Bong County, WIPNET County Coordinator, Cerue Lyeah, thanked Alfalit International for the donation and described the gesture as timely and life-saving.“I want to be so grateful to Alfalit International for this timely donation which will indeed sustain their homes for a month. You’ve just saved us during this difficult economic time. We will never forget what Alfalit has done for our women today,” Madam Lyeah added.She further appreciated Alfalit International for teaching the women to read and write over the years, something she said has brought great changes in the lives of the women under the peace hut.“Because of Alfalit, most of the women can now read, write and sign their own names; they are no longer using their thumbs to sign,” the Gbarnga WIPNET coordinator said.In all the counties, towns and places visited, jubilation by the women marked the distribution, with the recipients describing the donation as timely and a great relief to them during this Independence Day celebration week.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more