15 January 2013

Liberia: Lawmakers Return to Capitol

House Speaker, Jenekai Alex Tyler has strongly reminded members of the 53rd National Legislature never to allow the development initiative of government to be driven by a few. Speaking at a brief ceremony marking the opening of the second sitting of the National legislature, Speaker Tyler said development initiatives must be wholesome and people-driven noting, "By doing so, you can be sure of rapid infrastructural development that will enhance viability and prosperity of the nation and its people."

In addition to their responsibilities which include, law making, oversight and representation, Speaker Tyler called on his colleagues to rise up to the development drive and challenges of the time. He noted, "We must consummate and develop a program during this sitting through budgetary appropriation that allows direct implementation of infrastructural projects within our various districts while examining the overall development needs of the nation."

As members of the 53rd Legislature commence their second sitting, Speaker Tyler then called on them to give their highest priority to the consideration of some 50 bills before that august body to be brought on the floor for debate and subsequent passage into law where appropriate.

He disclosed that at the close of the first sitting of the House of Representatives 50 bills were in committee rooms covering a vast array of subjects and interests ranging from support for community radio, to community colleges, to the Decent Work Bill, to the Code of Conduct bill, among others.

Commenting further, Tyler reminded members of the House that the creation of a viable middle class in Liberia is inevitable for development. "Public sector investment is critical to developing that much touted but highly elusive middle class," the House Speaker intimated.

According to him, local and/or indigenous business empowerment is a vehicle that ensures such process. "We in recent time observed the injection of capital from the Central Bank of Liberia to achieve this objective; we remain apprehensive as to the authority for such cash infusion and question the plan of action that ensures the success of the program," Speaker averred.

On the issue of the General Auditing Commission, the Speaker said the GAC is by law amenable to the legislature but despite this amenability the agency has not submitted any plan of action to that august body. He then assured the public that the legislature will step up its authority to ensure compliance.

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