The Liberian Senate has spoken out against the deplorable road condition in Liberia mostly in the Southeastern parts of the country and called on the Ministry of Justice to probe complaint filed by the Ministry of Public Works against its contractors.
The Liberian Senate has at the same time, mandated the Ministry of Justice to investigate complaints made by the Minister of Public Works, Ruth Coker-Collins of several contractors of primary road corridors who have failed in the implementation of the contracts despite receiving payments from the Ministry of Finance.
The President Pro-tempore of the Liberian Senate, Albert T. Chie said the Senate has received a briefing from Minister Coker-Collins on the progress on road rehabilitation of the primary corridors leading to the southeastern counties and other places around the country which according to him has become a national emergency.
Pro-Tempore Chie decried the rehabilitation of roads in the southeast saying that the process is very slow and the roads are still very deplorable.
Responding to the lawmakers, Public Works Minister Ruth Coker-Collins said the ministry is committed to doubling up and deploying more manpower and logistics on the corridors. Minister Coker-Collins blamed contractors for the delay in the rehabilitation of roads in the Southeast disclosing that she has complained to the Ministry of Justice for redress but nothing has been done by the Justice Ministry.
In more Legislative news, while speaking at the close of the Special Session of the Liberian Senate on Tuesday, September 5, 2023, Pro-Temp Chie revealed that the Senate has ratified the amended and restated mineral development agreement between the Republic of Liberia and the Bea Mountain Mining Company (BMMC) to continue to develop gold resources in western Liberia adding that the amendment contains improved revenue and benefits to the government and people of the host communities.
At the same time, confirmation of the seven nominated commissioners of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (NEC) was carried out but with a Senate Plenary's mandate not to communicate the results to the Executive until all financial obligations for the unexpired portion of the tenure of the former Commissioners who were not maintained on the new Board of Commissioners are settled by the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning.
Meanwhile, the head of the Liberian Senate said the Board of Commissioners of the National Elections Commission (NEC) informed the Senate that they are ready to conduct a transparent and impartial election in October and that the government has provided adequate funding for the process and deployment of personnel and logistics will be done subsequently.
It can be recalled that in recent times by request of President George Manneh Weah, on August 22, 2023, the Liberian Senate convened a Special Session to consider time-bound matters of national interest in line with Article 32(b) of the 1986 Constitution that could be handled before the 2023 General and Legislative Elections.