15 January 2013

Liberia: Learning Time Over - Says Speaker As Leg. Begins Second Sitting

The 53rd National Legislature yesterday (Jan 14) returned from its first break, with Speaker Alex J. Tyler calling on his colleagues that it's time to do the Liberian people's business because their learning time--the first sitting--was over.

Tyler challenged lawmakers to fully participate in all plenary discussions and work harder to enact laws that will impact the livelihood of the Liberian people.

Speaking at the opening ceremonies Tyler said he is confident that members of the legislature will work to move the country forward, stating that the House will remain engage with the Liberian Senate and the other two branches of government in the actualization of the welfare of the Liberian people.

The Speaker furthered that House and member of the Liberian Senate will remain engaged and proactive in the formulation of bills and other laws that will strengthen the country's development agenda.

He then commended members of the National Legislature and other branches of government for the level of coordination that existed amongst them during the first sitting and hope that it will continue in this second sitting.

The second sitting was partially marred bitterness between the legislature and the Executive over some policy issues including passage of the budget and other harsh exchanges.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Speaker Tyler and colleagues went gutter when the President allegedly accused them of bring self seekers, with the House demanding that the President retract her statement.

The issue and several others were reportedly discussed and ironed out behind closed doors as some of the debate almost turned ridiculous in public domain.

But fresh from break, Tyler told his colleagues that the first sitting was over and that it was time for real business.

Senate Pro Tempore and Grand Bassa County Senator, Gbarzongar Findley, on the other hand said the Liberia Senate has resumed on a solid ground and sound principles which is intended to foster the country's development programs.

Findley indicated that the second sitting of the Senate will be better than the first and called on his fellow lawmakers to continue to seek the welfare of the Liberian people.

In a related development, the Vice President of Liberia and President of the Liberian Senate, Joseph N. Boakai, thanked members of the 53rd Legislature for the level of work done in transforming post-war Liberia.

He reminded them of their work being very crucial to the survivability of the Liberian people, adding that without that legislative branch of government, the rights of Liberians will not be protected under the law of the country.

Several members of the other two branches of government were in attendance to grace the opening ceremonies.

The program began with the hoisting of the Liberian flag and flags of the 15 counties of Liberia, followed by a grand march into the respective chambers of Houses.

During the first sitting of the 53rd Legislature, the Liberia Democratic Institute (LDI) branded several members of both the House of Representatives and the Liberia Senate as "Bobo" Lawmakers, (Lawmakers that did not participate in plenary discussions).

Many of them took exception to the LDI report describing it as "untrue."

With the resumption of the second sitting, many Liberians are of the belief that the lawmakers will enact laws and policies that will impact citizens of the war-torn nation and bring it to pre-war status and beyond.

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