Thursday, November 18, 2010

Samukai, Ngafuan, Kanwea Gongar Recalled to Liberian Govt; Davis to NIC

- Rodney D. Sieh
source:  FrontPage Africa

Monrovia –

Three more Cabinet ministers have reportedly accepted President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s request to return to the Unity Party government. The Executive Mansion announced Thursday that the Ministers of Defense, Brownie Samukai; Education Minister Othello Gongar, Finance Minister Augustine Ngafuan and Internal Affairs Minister Harrison Kanwea have accepted President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s offer to resume their duties.

CONFIRMED: Natty B. Davis, minister of state without portfolio replaces Richard Tolbert at the National Investment Commission.

An Executive Mansion release Thursday said the President also appointed Mr. Natty B. Davies, former Minister of State Without Portfolio to the position of Chairman of the National Investment Commission; Cllr. Seward Cooper, Legal Advisor, Ministry of State; and Mr. Jonathan Reffell, Ambassador-at-Large.

Cooper brings a wealth of experience to the post previously occupied by Morris Saytumah, who served as Minister of State for Legal and Economic Affairs. FrontPageAfrica has learned that the office will from now only handle legal issues regarding the presidency while an economic management team will handle issues relating to economic matters previously performed by Saytumah.

Cooper was founding member and the first Chairman of the Intellectual Discourse at the University of Liberia. The highlight of his chairmanship a contempt charge against the committee involving then Montserrado County Senior Senator the Late Frank Tolbert, who wanted the Senate to hold Cooper in contempt for inviting Frank Tolbert to explain why the Senate was considering a bill to grant President Tolbert emergency powers when in fact there was no state of war at that time. The committee invited Tolbert, who was brother to the President and William V.S. Tubman, son-in-law of President Tolbert.

Tubman agreed to attend but Frank Tolbert took exception, stating that it was an affront to his person and position. He therefore formally wrote to the Senate requesting that Cooper be charged with contempt and giving him a specific date and time which at the time was convening at the E.J.Roye building because the Capitol building was under renovation.

Brownie Samukai, left returns to his post as Minister of Defense while Harrison Kanwea, right, returns to post at Internal Affairs.

The student council decided to respond to the letter alleging contempt informing the Senate that Cooper was not acting as an individual but was acting as chairman of the committee and was therefore representing the student body and inform the Senate that according to the constitution, the people had the right to call their legislators to come to them and discuss issues and to even instruct their legislators about what to do.

The Senate referred the Student Council letter to the committee on judiciary headed by senior senator Joshua M. Harmon of Grand Bassa County and based on the Judiciary committee’s findings, the Senate wrote the student council indicating that the committee was justifiable in requesting the two senators to appear, therefore the charges were dropped. The decision was a landmark in favor of the student movement. Prior to that era, the Tubman administration which ended in 1971 did not tolerate inquiries from students.

Cooper was also elected head of the All-Africa Students Union, a continental body of students across Africa, during the 1973 conference in Liberia.

On Wednesday, the Ministers of Agriculture, Public Works, Planning & Economic Affairs, Youth & Sports, and the Director General of the Civil Service Agency, Dr. C. William Allen, have accepted the President’s offer to resume their duties.

The Minister of Justice, Cllr. Christiana Tah, also accepted the President’s offer to resume her duties with the following new key Assistants: Idella Cooper, Acting Deputy Minister for Economic Affairs; Freddie Taylor, Acting Deputy Minister for Administration; and Victoria Sherman-Lang, Acting Deputy Minister for Codification.

Augustine Ngafuan, recalled to post at Ministry of Finance.

To date, at least ten ministers have been recalled back to the government with at least four not likely to return: Former Minster of Lands, Mines and Energy Eugene Shannon, Saytumah, NIC boss Richard Tolbert and Former Foreign Minister Banke King Akerele. Akerele, addressing her departure for the first time in a statement issued in Monrovia Thursday night defended her legacy saying: “If anything, hers is a legacy of hard work; demanding high standards of responsibility, accountability and performance. She has little patience for non-performance. She has often times, without hesitation, put in her own personal funds when GOL resources have not been available pending reimbursement.”

Still left hanging is on-leave Ministers of Gender Varbah Gayflor; Labor Minister Tiawan Gongloe; Minister of Transport Alphonse Gaye; Information Minister Cletus Sieh, Minister of Health Dr. Walter Gwenigale and the Minister of National Security, Victor Helb. Also the Minster of Post and Telecommunications Jeremiah Sulunteh; General Services Agency Director Willard Russel and Commerce Minister Miatta Beysolow.

FrontPageAfrica has learned that Gayflor is still on the bubble with multiple sources suggesting that she could replace Davis as Minister of State Without Portfolio. Miatta Fahnbulleh is said to be under consideration for the post of Gender Minister

News Headline

Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah

Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah


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