Liberian Legislators Return For Extra Session Called by President


Monrovia – In keeping with request made by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for lawmakers to cut short their legislative break and return to session, lawmakers Tuesday returned with some members raising concerns over signatures on the proclamation issued by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Report by Henry Karmo  – [email protected]

Representative Gabriel Nyenkan (UP- District #11 – Montserrado County) and Senator Jonathan Kaipay (Grand Bassa County) raised concern over why Deputy Foreign Minister Deweh Gray signed the proclamation calling for their recall.

But some of their colleagues disagreed with the protesting lawmakers, stating that there was precedence for such practice.

According to Representative Garrison Yealue of Nimba County past proclamations had been signed by Foreign Affairs Ministers.

Past proclamation in the possession of this paper shows that representative Yealue was correct about the issue of precedence as evidenced by the August 25th 2016 extension proclamation which was signed by then acting Foreign Minister Ellas Shoniyin.

Article 32 (b) of the Liberian Constitution gives the President the authority to on his or her own initiative or upon receipt of a certificate sign by at least one-fourth of the total membership of each House and by proclamation, extend a regular session of the Legislature beyond the date for adjournment or call a special or extraordinary session of that body to discuss or act upon matters of national emergency and concern.

Whether the extension or call is at the request of the Legislature, the proclamation shall be issued no later than 48 hours after receipt of the certificate by the President.

The President’s recent Proclamation signed by the Deputy Foreign minister, said: “I am pleased to present my compliments and inform that the Proclamation requesting the 53rd Legislature to return for a special session by assembling in each of their respective chambers in the Capitol Building, in the City of Monrovia, Montserrado County has been approved by the President of the Republic of Liberia.”

“Now therefore, I Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of the Republic of Liberia acting pursuant to Article 32 (b) of the Liberian Constitution, and by virtue of the authority in me vested, do hereby issue this proclamation for the 53rd Legislature to return for a special session by assembling in each of their respective chambers in the Capitol Building, in the city of Monrovia Montserrado County, Republic of Liberia, to discuss and act upon matters of National concern for a period of one month, commencing from November 8, 2016 thru December 8, 2016,” the proclamation stated.