25 February 2013

Liberia: Legislative Action Must Stand


Members Of The House of Representatives look unrelenting and unbending on the arrest and incarceration of acting Monrovia City Mayor Mary Broh.

For the first time in years, this is one issue that members of the House have a unanimous opinion. Members from the ruling Unity party and the opposition feel very strong that acting City Mayor Broh must be arrested and placed in common cell for obstructing an order.

Madam Broh Ran into trouble when she obstructed the imprisonment of Montserrado County Superintendent Grace Tete Kpan who was held in contempt by the lawmakers for disregarding their order with respect to the implementation of the County Development Fund (CDF).

Giving A Comprehensive account of the situation at the Monrovia Central Prison (MCP), the Sergeant-at-Arms of the House of Representatives Brigadier General Martin Johnson informed the Representative that upon his arrival with Superintendent Kpan at the MCP, he was obstructed by Madam Broh, who grabbed Superintendent Kpan's hand and snatched her away in a vehicle after a brawl between him and Madam Broh backed by group of women.

At The Moment, the whereabouts of the acting mayor is unknown, however, it's being alleged she could be hiding under the cover of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. Meantime, Madam Broh and Superintendent Kpan have been suspended by President Sirleaf.

The House's Action was robust and unalterable, especially at the time when the image of the Legislature had been brought to public ridicule and disdain in the wake of a secret recording in which the Chairman of the Montserrado County Caucus Representative Edward Forh is heard incriminating himself. Notwithstanding, Madam Kpan was held in contempt (not related to the secret recording) for not respecting the mandate of the House as regards the implementation of the County Development Fund (CDF).

In The Recording, Rep. Forh is quoted in a telephone conversation with the suspended Superintendent as instructing her to enter into what seemed a 'clandestine deal' about dividing the amount of US$400,000 between both of them.

Rep. Forh Is heard telling Madam Kpan that the "The money in question must be divided among us; you eat some, I eat some, and the minister eats some." What Forh did not know that the conversation soon turned out to be a snare.

This Matter Is clear and it seems there's no other way of handling it than Madam Broh facing the action of the Lawmakers. Under the law, the doctrine of the separation of power must be respected and upheld amongst the three branches of government; Legislative, Executive and Judiciary. Mary Broh actually transcended her line of demarcation therefore, she must face the consequence of her action.

The Lawmakers Have compromised on some serious issues for which the integrity of the honorable body is being eroded. We believe that Madam Kpan may have disrespected the House; however, she raised a genuine issue (with specific reference to the secret recording) that members of the august body are obliged to investigate. Although it's illegal to secretly record another, but fact remains that Rep. Forh has embarrassed his colleagues.

The Disrespectful Behavior by Madam Broh not should go unpunished because allowing it to pass -by, would signal that the Legislature is lazy and wick to penalize people who disregard its orders.

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