28 February 2018

Liberia: Senate Holds Presidential Nominees

Information gathered within the corridors of the Liberian Senate indicates that some nominees are faced with serious problems, allegedly putting the Senate in a difficult position to set a precedent.

This paper has gathered that the Plenary of the Liberian Senate is yet to discuss the confirmation of four presidential nominees, though it is yet to give reason so far.

Presidential nominees still on hold at the Senate are said to include Health Minister - designate Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah, Lofa County Superintendent - designate William Tamba Kamba, River Gee County Superintendent - designate Mr. Philip Nyenuh, and Grand Gedeh County Superintendent - designate Kai Farley.

The four nominees have at separate times gone through confirmation hearings along with other nominees who have since been confirmed by the Senate.

Though, the Plenary has not given reason for delaying the confirmation of these four officials - designate, the Senate's Chairman on Internal Affairs on Tuesday, 27 February requested Plenary to remove the names of the three superintendents until certain things are put in place.

This paper is hinted that some of the nominees are faced with serious academic crisis which is alleged to put the Senate in a difficult position to set a precedent.

According to the information, some of the nominees do not have college degree while others are beginners in colleges.

Some Senators are said to be arguing that confirming non- degree holders to assistant minister posts which is a technical nerve of a ministry could hamper the functionaries of government and also create a bad image internationally.

As for the Health Minister - designate Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah, she faces sentiment against being confirmed by the Senate as a result of some alleged issues in her private practice in the medical sector.

She is currently facing a lawsuit for the 'wrongful death' of the late Pastor Desiree Fahnbulleh at the nominee's private hospital called Hope for Women International Incorporated .

The victim is said to have died at the hospital during childbirth, but the nominee has claimed innocence on grounds that she was not in the country when the victim died.

The Fahnbulleh family filed a US$6 million action of damages for wrongful death against the hospital with the 6th Judicial Circuit Civil Law Court at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia.

Larry Fahnbulleh, widower of the late Pastor Desiree Fahnbulleh, who is leading the family protest, is urging President George Manneh Weah to withdraw Dr. Jallah's appointment.

The Liberia Medical and Dental Council (LMDC) in its 2017 investigative report held Women of Hope Hospital International liable for the 'wrongful death'.

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