-Unveils Legislative Agenda Today At The Capitol
-But Any Good News For Liberians?
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is expected to address a joint session of the Legislature today at the Capitol Building in an effort to unveil her administration’s legislative agenda for the year 2015.
The ceremony is in fulfillment of Article 58 of the Liberian Constitution which states “the President shall, on the fourth working Monday in January of each year, present the administration’s legislative program for the ensuring session, and shall once a year report to the Legislature on the state of the Republic. In presenting the economic condition of the Republic, the report shall cover expenditure as well as income.”
However, as a matter of tradition, Liberians everywhere and friends of Liberia would this afternoon be glued to electronic media outlets, including radio and television stations to hear for themselves, perhaps not to be told by another about what Pres. Sirleaf would present to the Legislature for the next one year’s program.
China Union’s Chief Security In Court
By Zeze Evans Ballah-From Bong Mines
Police in Fuamah District, Bong County, have charged and sent to court the local head of a private security firm, Loyal Protective Guard Service, Klay O. Dormu and three others, for their alleged involvement in the theft of a consignment of rice intended for Ebola victims in the area.
Others facing prosecution include the Director of Voice of Fuamah, owned by Representative Corpu G. Barclay, Hampton B. Giddings, the District Commissioner, Samuel Tarr, and one George Kotah.
The Management of the Loyal Protective Guard Service in Bong Mines, which is providing contracted security and protection services for China Union Dormu, has already been disrobed and sacked from the entity, as the result of his alleged connection with the crime.
The Liberia National Police (LNP) has charged the four men with crimes ranging from misapplication of entrusted property, criminal facilitation and theft of property, in accordance with 15.56, 10.4 and 15.51 of the Revised Penal Code of Liberia, based on a complaint filed by the Republic of Liberia, by and through Richellieu P. Barclay, head of the concerned citizens group in Fuamah District.
-Vows Strong Punishment For Perpetrators
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, accompanied by several government officials, including Gender Minister, Julia Duncan-Cassell, Montserrado County District #17 Representative, William V. Darkel and Brewerville City Acting mayor, George Varney Curtis, early last Friday morning, paid a surprised visit to the resident of the family of the late Ma Musu Fofana, aged 12, who died after she was reportedly raped on the night of two Sundays ago in her neighborhood. The family lives in the Moulton Corner community of Brewerville, outside Monrovia.
Police is holding a man identified as Musa Kanneh, 49, for the rape and subsequent death of the late Ma Musu Fofana.
In a brief and tear squeezing chat with the victims’ annt, with whom she lived, the Liberian leader, herself a long time champion for women and girls right and protection not only in Liberia, but across Africa and the world beyond, expressed shock over the raping and subsequent death of the little girl.
-Calls on Legislators To Adopt Plan
By A. Omaska Mark
The head of the Joint Legislative Modernization Committee (JLMC) Secretariat, B. McCarthy Weh, II, is calling on the members of the National Legislature to reintroduce and readopt the Legislature modernization plan.
According to Mr. Weh, the plan, which initial five year duration elapsed since 2013, still has many of its programs unimplemented, as the result of both Houses gross failure to adapt it.
The plan, approved by the Legislature in 2009, is a five years modernization program which seeks to “modernize” the Liberian Legislature and bring it on par with 21st century standards and expectations.
Out of 36 activities, only 4 or 11% have been implemented, while 14 others, constituting 39%, are yet to commence, adding that 18 of the program activities or 50% falls in a category of ongoing programs.
By Veronica F. Klay
The Liberian Government and the Guinean base company, West Africa Exploration (WAE), over the weekend signed a “25-year infrastructure development agreement,” which provides for the transshipment of minerals mined in Guinea through Liberian sea ports.
Officials of the National Investment Commission (NIC), and representatives of the Inter-Ministerial Concession Committee (IMCC) of the government, which includes the Ministers of Lands, Mines and Energy, Finance and Development Planning, Transport and the Minister of Justice, signed on behalf of the state.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, NIC Commissioner, George Gyude Wisner II, while outlining the significance and future economic and social benefits of the agreement, recounted that the process leading to the signing of the landmark agreement was first started in July, 1975, between of the then Guinean and Liberian Presidents, Ahmed Sekou Toure and William R. Tolbert, Jr.
The Prosecution Section of the Ministry of Justice, in preparation for the opening of the February term of court, will on Monday January 26, 2015 commence a weeklong refresher training workshop of over eighty government prosecutors in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County from around the Country.
The training is a regular refresher for government prosecutors to share their experiences over the past term of court as they prepare for the next term of court and is under the Theme: “Proof Beyond Reasonable Doubt –The Standard for Criminal Conviction”.
The Land Commission (LC), has established a Land Coordination Center (LCC) in Upper Caldwell to handle land disputes through formal Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in Montserrado County.
The center will also pilot formal ADR approaches that deal with land cases originating from deeds and diagrams.
Speaking at the launch program Friday, Land Commission Chairman Cecil Brandy said the project forms part of government’s efforts to strengthen the settlement of land cases out of court.
“We want most land cases to be solved without the use of violence, and as such, we are urging citizens of Montserrado to make use of this center,” Brandy said.
The Liberian Senate has endorsed a recommendation from Nimba County Senator, Thomas Grupee calling for amendment of several of its rules.
In his letter to plenary, dated January 21, Grupee indicated that under Article 47 of the Liberian Constitution and the Senate Rules 19 and 14, there is no provision calling for mid-term election of Pro-temp and statutory committees’ chairpersons, but rather their replacement in case of death, expulsion or removal.
Article 47 of the Liberian Constitution calls for the election of the body’s Pro-tempore once every six years and removal from office for cause by resolution of a two-thirds majority of the membership, while Rule 19 calls for election in case the Pro-temp is removed within 30 working days.
Following the reading of Grupee’s letter and a subsequent motion by Bong County Senator Henry Yallah, several senators raised their hands in un-readiness to immediately amend the rules.
About 150 youth volunteers under the banner of the Sanniquellie Youth Association (SYA) have embarked on clean-up exercise of government property in Nimba County.
The property include administrative buildings, school campuses and principal streets of Sanniquellie.
SYA president William Mandinn told the Liberia News Agency Friday that the initiative was organized in conjunction with the municipal council of the county’s political capital and with support from prominent Nimbians at home and abroad.
Police have charged a 32-year-old man with murder in connection with the death of a girl, 11, in Gbarnga City, Bong County.
The victim went missing on January 15, and was discovered dead on January 17, 2015, with several body parts missing.
Alvin Morris, alias “Old Man,” was charged after days of police investigation, but has since denied the allegation.