Liberia: House of Representatives to Adopt Resolution in Solidarity with China Over Coronavirus Outbreak
Monrovia – Members of the House of Representatives have voted to adopt a nonbinding resolution to be sent to the National People’s Congress (NPC) of the Republic of China expressing sympathy and solidarity over the coronavirus outbreak in that sisterly country.
Plenary took the decision on Tuesday based on a communication from Rep. Edwin Melvin Snowe (District #1, Bomi County) who chairs the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
Rep. Snowe, in his communication called on members of the House of Representatives stated that statistics show the virus has claimed over one thousand seven hundred lives with over a million others quarantined.
The outbreak, he added, has also affected the Chinese economy, brought about travel isolation and threaten China’s position in global trade.
With these troubling situation grappling one of Liberia’s bilateral partners, Rep. Snowe noted that it was prudent for the House to take diplomatic steps in expressing solidarity with China.
Excerpt: “Considering these unfortunate circumstances and understanding the bilateral relationship that exists between the Republic of Liberia and the People’s Republic of China, mindful of the crucial role China has played and continue to play in Liberia’s Development, I request that the House of Representatives take the requisite diplomatic steps to express solidarity with the People’s Republic of China and assure them of our support and brotherly love during this difficult time in their nation’s history.”
He added: “Hon. Speaker, we believe this is the most appropriate thing to do, as our silence now could prove dangerous for the friendship and relationship both countries now enjoy. I am hopeful that this communication will receive the most urgent attention of plenary and thanks for the usual cooperation.”
Following the reading of the communication, majority lawmakers lauded Rep. Snowe for the letter but offered diverse views.
Rep. Larry younquoi (District #8, Nimba County) advised the House to communicate with the President, who he said is clothed with the constitutional authority to oversee all diplomatic missions of the country.
But Rep. Acarous Gray (District #8, Montserrado County) countered that the Legislature, as an independent body, should expressed solidarity with the government and people of the Republic of China through its counterpart, the National People’s Congress (NPC).
Rep. Gray was back by several lawmakers including Rep. Mariamu Fofana of (District #4, Lofa County) called for each member present in plenary to offer a statement of solidarity to the China to be followed by the official communication to the NPC.
Rep. Fofana, in her solidarity message noted that although Liberia may not be wealthy enough to offer financial help, but the experience in fighting Ebola can be shared with China in the fight against the Coronavirus.
“The relationship between the People’s Republic of China and Liberia cannot be over emphasized. We don’t even have to go far. Look at this fabulous place (the chamber) we are sitting. Thanks to the Chinese. So, when they are in problem, I think is important that we step up to the plate to let them know that they are our friends in need and friends in deeds,” she said.
“We want to say thank you to the Chinese. We want tell our brothers and sisters, especially the care givers and women of China.”