Traditional Council Fails to Conclude Peace Talk Amongst Lawmakers


Monrovia – Leaders of the National Traditional Council of Liberia on Monday failed for the second day to conclude the peace talks initiated between rival lawmakers at the House of Representatives.

Report by Henry Karmo – [email protected]

The second day of the meeting, expected to have taken place on Monday afternoon, could not go ahead as scheduled due to the absence of Deputy Speaker Hans Barchue who heads a group lawmakers opposing Speaker Tyler.

Speaking to reporters shortly after failure to convene the meeting, Representative Byron Brown of the anti-Tyler bloc said the traditional leaders have rescheduled the meeting for Tuesday, August 23, directing that all 73 members of the House of Representatives be in attendance at the headquarters of the Traditional Council.

According to Representative Brown, the meeting could not get underway because Deputy Speaker Barchue could not show up as he had gone to represent his majority bloc at the Supreme Court.

“We have been troubled so long by our past civil war. We need peace in this country and I think the traditional council’s intervention is all about peace,” he said.

“Peace that will give us the opportunity to work for the Liberian people and speak with one mind so that the budget and other instruments that are before us can be passed”, the lawmaker said.

“Peace is costly and if you want it, you have to sometimes give out your rights. Peace does not mean to sweep the truth under the carpet. It is not the absence of justice.

We will do the right thing and if we have the two thirds majority, we can do the Liberian people’s business.”

Lawmaker Brown, a onetime ally of Speaker Tyler, said his decision to join the Anti-Tyler bloc was a decision made to save the country, something he said was far beyond friendship and about saving the state.

It can be recalled the Supreme Court Associate Justice –In- Chambers, Jamesetta Howard-Wolokollie, recently cited the lawmakers meeting in the Joint Chambers of the National Legislature as the ‘majority bloc’ to a conference on Monday, August 22, 2016 at 12:00 noon.

A communication from the office of the Clerk of the Supreme Court Martha Henries Bryant, dated August 18, 2016 and addressed to Hans Barchue, Deputy Speaker, Numene Bartekwa, Chairman, Munah Pelham Youngblood, Secretary and other members of the House of Representatives cited the “majority lawmakers” to a conference.

The communication reads: “By directive of her honor Jamesetta Howard Wolokollie, Associate presiding in Chambers, you and members of the Honorable House of Representatives convening in the Joint Chambers of the National Legislature are hereby cited to a conference with her honor on Monday, August 22, 2016 at 12:00 in connection with the case J. Alex Tyler, Speaker of the House of Representatives versus lawmakers of the Majority Bloc”.

The power struggle among members of the House of Representatives is taking a different trend with lawmakers from the two blocs- Anti and Pro Tyler caught in the middle whether to continue the legal pursuit now before the Supreme Court of Liberia or listen to a decision from Traditional Council of Liberia, asking the parties to abandon the court process.

Embattled Speaker Alex J. Tyler filed a petition at the Supreme Court of Liberia seeking the issuance of a Writ of Prohibition against lawmakers seeking his recusal from presiding over the House of Representatives.

But during the weekend, traditional leaders held a meeting with Speaker Tyler and the head of the anti-Tyler bloc, Deputy Speaker Hans Barchue where the traditional leaders told the lawmakers not to appear before the court.

The chiefs have mandated lawmakers from the two blocs to recall any petition currently before the Supreme Court.

The head of the Traditional Council of Liberia, Chief Zanzan Karwor told lawmakers from the two blocs during the first dialogue meeting, to back off from their plan to go before the Supreme Court of Liberia.