Under Indicted Speaker’s Gavel: Liberia’s House Mandates Bribery Probe
Monrovia – With an indictment drawn against some individuals named in a recent report released by international watchdog Global Witness including Speaker Alex Tyler and court proceedings expected to continue the House of Representatives at the National Legislature has named members of its joint legislative committee to probe findings contained in the same report.
The Committee has been mandated to probe alleged altering of the Sable Mining act by former and present officials in the Executive Branch of government to favor the company in its bid to acquire the Wologizi Mountain in Lofa County.
Those appointed on the committee include; Representatives James Biney (NPP-Maryland County), Leyster Paye (Bong County), Mariamu Fofana (Unity Party, Lofa County), Christian Chea (River Gee-County) and Representatives Bhofal Chambers and Edward Forh of (Montserrado and Maryland Counties respectively) as resource officers on the committee.
Despite the decision from the Lower House, the Senate has failed to name its members to form part of the joint committee. As anticipated both chambers of the Legislature were expected to name members of the joint committee within 24 hours.
On Tuesday, showing spirit de corps, the House of Representatives and the Senate issued a joint statement, calling on President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to instruct the Special Presidential taskforce to cease attacks on former and current members of the Legislature.
“The Legislature therefore calls on the president to instruct the special Taskforce to cease attacking the person and property of any present or former member of the Legislature while the joint committee carries out the investigation”, the statement noted.
The statement from the Legislature came a day after House Speaker, Alex Tyler, reportedly agreed to appear before the Special presidential Task Force which has been set up in the wake of a recent Global Witness report, which alleged that US$950,000 was paid in bribes by the UK based Sable Mining via the Sherman and Sherman Law firm, owned by Grand Cape Mount County Senator, Varney Sherman, who has also been named in the report as the one who allegedly instructed payments to top officials of government to change the PPCC Act for Sable to acquire the Wologizi Mountain.
The legislators’ call did not seem to yield result as two senior members of the August body were arrested on indictment from the court and appeared in court at Criminal Court C at the Temple of Justice Wednesday.
In a text message response to FrontPageAfrica’s inquiry, Senator Geraldine Doe-Sheriff, Chairman on the Senate Committee on Executive said, the senate did not establish any committee as was expected.
Henry Karmo (0886522495) [email protected]