Senators Emerge Tight-lipped, Stone-faced after 2-hour Executive Session

first_imgLawmakers are not taking kindly to what they consider a half-hearted attempt by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to appease (quiet down, calm down) them for ‘misbehavior’ by one of her lieutenants: the Chief of Police, Chris Massaquoi.Senators seem dissatisfied with a recent communication from President Sirleaf, concerning their call on her to take strong and appropriate action against Massaquoi, for what some have referred to as juvenile behavior .It may be recalled that President Sirleaf recently wrote the Senate replying a communication sent her in which that body complained of Director Massaquoi “laying siege to the Capitol Building while the Senate was in plenary (full attendance).”President Sirleaf informed the Senate that she had written Director Massaquoi “a strong letter of reprimand (scolding  him) and…suspending him for two days to allow him time to write a letter of apology for personal presentated at a plenary sitting of the Senate.”Since that communication, lawmakers have been observed as having  assumed a non-cooperative stance with the Executive.That suggests that the Senators are divided over a decision they obviously have been mulling (considering, thinking about) in connection with reprimand they believe insufficient to discourage the Police Chief from misbehaving in the future.Yesterday’s unadopted agenda was loaded with several important items, among them discussion on the proposed Amendment to Elections Law; Report from the Committee on Banking and Finance; Report from the Ways, Means, Finance and Budget on the Act to Provide Fifteen Percent of the Fiscal National Budget for County Development; and a communication from Police Director Massaquoi.Other important items on the unused agenda included a report from the Committee on Banking and Currency on the confirmation hearing of Hon. Boakai S. Kamara, Deputy Governor for economic Policy-Designate, Central Bank of Liberia; and the much talked-about communication from the House of Representatives on the placement of US$73,000,000 in the 2014/2015 National Budget.Meanwhile, one of the older Senators confided to a few journalists that executive sessions are being convened to deliberate important national issues that need to be kept out of the media. “What is for the media and the general public, we discuss in plenary; what is for Executive Sessions remains exclusively so.”For the second time since returning to the Capitol Building from their Constituency Break on January 13, Accordingly, members of the 53rd Senate yesterday failed to conduct open plenary; instead,the presiding officer seized the proposed agenda and asked for an Executive Session to discuss pressing national issues.Every attempt yesterday to draw even the most press-friendly Senators to divulge  a gist of what is being discussed in executive sessions, failed to yield results.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Ebola, AIDS Manufactured by Western Pharmaceuticals, US DoD?

first_imgAfrica must not relegate the Continent to become the locality for disposal and the deposition of hazardous chemicals, dangerous drugs, and chemical or biological agents of emerging diseases. There is urgent need for affirmative action in protecting the less affluent of poorer countries, especially African citizens, whose countries are not as scientifically and industrially endowed as the United States and most Western countries, sources of most viral or bacterial GMOs that are strategically designed as biological weapons. It is most disturbing that the U. S. Government has been operating a viral hemorrhagic fever bioterrorism research laboratory in Sierra Leone. Are there others? Wherever they exist, it is time to terminate them. If any other sites exist, it is advisable to follow the delayed but essential step: Sierra Leone closed the US bioweapons lab and stopped Tulane University for further testing. Dear World Citizens:I have read a number of articles from your Internet outreach as well as articles from other sources about the casualties in Liberia and other West African countries about the human devastation caused by the Ebola virus. About a week ago, I read an article published in the Internet news summary publication of the Friends of Liberia that said that there was an agreement that the initiation of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa was due to the contact of a two-year old child with bats that had flown in from the Congo. That report made me disconcerted with the reporting about Ebola, and it stimulated a response to the “Friends of Liberia,” saying that African people are not ignorant and gullible, as is being implicated. A response from Dr. Verlon Stone said that the article was not theirs, and that “Friends of Liberia” was simply providing a service. He then asked if he could publish my letter in their Internet forum. I gave my permission, but I have not seen it published. Because of the widespread loss of life, fear, physiological trauma, and despair among Liberians and other West African citizens, it is incumbent that I make a contribution to the resolution of this devastating situation, which may continue to recur, if it is not properly and adequately confronted. I will address the situation in five (5) points: 5.   AFRICAN LEADERS AND AFRICAN COUNTRIES NEED TO TAKE THE LEAD IN DEFENDING BABIES, CHILDREN, AFRICAN WOMEN, AFRICAN MEN, AND THE ELDERLY. THESE CITIZENS DO NOT DESERVE TO BE USED AS GUINEA PIGS!  1.    EBOLA IS A GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISM (GMO) I am now reading The Hot Zone, a novel, by Richard Preston (copyrighted 1989 and 1994); it is heart-rending. The prolific and prominent writer, Steven King, is quoted as saying that the book is “One of the most horrifying things I have ever read. What a remarkable piece of work.” As a New York Times bestseller, The Hot Zone is presented as “A terrifying true story.” Terrifying, yes, because the pathological description of what was found in animals killed by the Ebola virus is what the virus has been doing to citizens of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia in its most recent outbreak: Ebola virus destroys peoples’ internal organs and the body deteriorates rapidly after death. It softens and the tissues turn into jelly, even if it is refrigerated to keep it cold. Spontaneous liquefaction is what happens to the body of people killed by the Ebola virus! The author noted in Point 1, Dr. Horowitz, chides The Hot Zone for writing to be politically correct; I understand because his book makes every effort to be very factual. The 1976 Ebola incident in Zaire, during President Mobutu Sese Seko, was the introduction of the GMO Ebola to Africa. About the Author:  The World Health Organization (WHO) and several other UN Agencies have been implicated in selecting and enticing African countries to participate in the testing events, promoting vaccinations, but pursuing various testing regiments. The August 2, 2014 article, West Africa: What are US Biological Warfare Researchers Doing in the Ebola Zone? by Jon Rappoport of Global Research pinpoints the problem that is facing African governments.  The world must be alarmed. All Africans, Americans, Europeans, Middle Easterners, Asians, and people from every conclave on Earth should be astonished. African people, notably citizens more particularly of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone are victimized and are dying every day. Listen to the people who distrust the hospitals, who cannot shake hands, hug their relatives and friends. Innocent people are dying, and they need our help. The countries are poor and cannot afford the whole lot of personal protection equipment (PPE) that the situation requires. The threat is real, and it is larger than a few African countries. The challenge is global, and we request assistance from everywhere, including China, Japan, Australia, India, Germany, Italy, and even kind-hearted people in the U.S., France, the U.K., Russia, Korea, Saudi Arabia, and anywhere else whose desire is to help. The situation is bleaker than we on the outside can imagine, and we must provide assistance however we can. To ensure a future that has less of this kind of drama, it is important that we now demand that our leaders and governments be honest, transparent, fair, and productively engaged. They must answer to the people. Please stand up to stop Ebola testing and the spread of this dastardly disease. (e) Tekmira, a Canadian pharmaceutical company;   Reports narrate stories of the US Department of Defense (DoD) funding Ebola trials on humans, trials which started just weeks before the Ebola outbreak in Guinea and Sierra Leone. The reports continue and state that the DoD gave a contract worth $140 million dollars to Tekmira, a Canadian pharmaceutical company, to conduct Ebola research. This research work involved injecting and infusing healthy humans with the deadly Ebola virus. Hence, the DoD is listed as a collaborator in a “First in Human” Ebola clinical trial (NCT02041715, which started in January 2014 shortly before an Ebola epidemic was declared in West Africa in March. Disturbingly, many reports also conclude that the US government has a viral fever bioterrorism research laboratory in Kenema, a town at the epicentre of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The only relevant positive and ethical olive-branch seen in all of my reading is that reported, “The US government funding of Ebola trials on healthy humans comes amid warnings by top scientists in Harvard and Yale that such virus experiments risk triggering a worldwide pandemic.” That threat still persists. (a) The US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), a well-known centre for bio-war research, located at Fort Detrick, Maryland;  (f) The UK’s GlaxoSmithKline; and  Obvious in this and other reports are, among others:  Horowitz (1998) was deliberate and unambiguous when he explained the threat of new diseases in his text, Emerging Viruses: AIDS and Ebola – Nature, Accident or Intentional. In his interview with Dr. Robert Strecker in Chapter 7, the discussion, in the early 1970s, made it obvious that the war was between countries that hosted the KGB and the CIA, and the ‘manufacture’ of ‘AIDS-Like Viruses’ was clearly directed at the other. In passing during the Interview, mention was made of Fort Detrick, “the Ebola Building,” and ‘a lot of problems with strange illnesses’ in “Frederick [Maryland].” By Chapter 12 in his text, he had confirmed the existence of an American Military-Medical-Industry that conducts biological weapons tests under the guise of administering vaccinations to control diseases and improve the health of “black Africans overseas.” The book is an excellent text, and all leaders plus anyone who has interest in science, health, people, and intrigue should study it. I am amazed that African leaders are making no acknowledgements or reference to these documents. (b) Tulane University, in New Orleans, USA, winner of research grants, including a grant of more than $7 million the National Institute of Health (NIH) to fund research with the Lassa viral hemorrhagic fever;  (d) Doctors Without Borders (also known by its French name, Medicins Sans Frontiers);  Sincerely, The U. S., Canada, France, and the U. K. are all implicated in the detestable and devilish deeds that these Ebola tests are. There is the need to pursue criminal and civil redress for damages, and African countries and people should secure legal representation to seek damages from these countries, some corporations, and the United Nations. Evidence seems abundant against Tulane University, and suits should start there. Yoichi Shimatsu’s article, The Ebola Breakout Coincided with UN Vaccine Campaigns, as published on August 18, 2014, in the Liberty Beacon. Dr. Cyril E. Broderick, Sr. 2.  EBOLA HAS A TERRIBLE HISTORY, AND TESTING HAS BEEN SECRETLY TAKING PLACE IN AFRICA (c) the US Center for Disease Control (CDC);  Thank you very much. (g) the Kenema Government Hospital in Kenema, Sierra Leone.  4.    THE NEED FOR LEGAL ACTION TO OBTAIN REDRESS FOR DAMAGES INCURRED DUE TO THE PERPETUATION OF INJUSTICE IN THE DEATH, INJURY AND TRAUMA IMPOSED ON LIBERIANS AND OTHER AFRICANS BY THE EBOLA AND OTHER DISEASE AGENTS.  3.    SITES AROUND AFRICA, AND IN WEST AFRICA, HAVE OVER THE YEARS BEEN SET UP FOR TESTING EMERGING DISEASES, ESPECIALLY EBOLA Dr. Broderick is a former professor of Plant Pathology at the University of Liberia’s College of Agriculture and Forestry.  He is also the former Observer Farmer in the 1980s.  It was from this column in our newspaper, the Daily Observer, that Firestone spotted him and offered him the position of Director of Research in the late 1980s.  In addition, he is a scientist, who has taught for many years at the Agricultural College of the University of Delaware. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Guyanese need answers on the role of Sittlington in Guyana

first_imgDear Editor,Government’s Advisor Sam Sittlington continues to cement himself in operational matters of the Special Organised Crimes Unit (SOCU). Isn’t it about time that the British High Commissioner comes clean on Sittlington’s role with SOCU? Is he an advisor? Or is he more involved? Are the British taxpayers aware of what their monies are being spent on?Editor, it has been over a year since concerns were publicised about a Government Minister, Khemraj Ramjattan, engaging Sittlington. It was the Minister who let the ‘cat out of the bag’ anyways. He had said, according to the report, that: “The fact (is) that I had some wine with Sam on Wednesday evening (March 8,2017) at Oasis was because I wanted to thank him for the great work he did at SOCU.” This ‘wine-drinking’ happened days after top leaders of the former Government were hauled into SOCU.By now most Guyanese are clear on what the role of SOCU was supposed to be, most Guyanese except those in this current coalition Government, which is strange because it is as if they forgot what they said only four years ago. As a former Leader of the Opposition, David Granger, at a press conference on October 11, 2014, acknowledged that SOCU was assigned “as the investigative arm of the FIU.” Another Cabinet Minister, Carl Greenidge (former Shadow Finance Minister), also in 2014 said: “The FIU, after receiving that report (from its reporting institutions), will now send it off to the SOCU which will operate as its investigative arm.” Editor, many people seemed to have forgotten not only this, but also the questions about what SOCU has been turned into, especially after Guyanese read reports of the deaths of a Guyana Defence Force rank, Robert Pyle and his wife, Stacy Pyle, as well as a truck driver, Linden Eastman, on December 30, 2015. The Guyana Defence Force said the deaths occurred during a legitimate operation in which the Force was supporting the work of SOCU. What work remains the question. Coming back to present happenings – with the controversy surrounding shift in the work of SOCU from the purpose it was set up for, the questionable operations of the Unit under this new Government and the personalities involved – Guyanese need answers on the role of Sittlington in Guyana.What do we know about Sittlington? Other than he was a Police Officer in Ireland, has a company, ‘The Fraud Company, Ltd’ and that he has worked in other third world countries. Is Sittlington the latest ‘consultant/advisor’ using Guyana to bolster his resume? The truth is also that the ambitions of personalities like Sittlington seem to find a happy synergy with the goals of the new APNU/AFC coalition Government – it fits what we heard on the campaign trail about jailing former Government officials. For example, only days ago the newspapers reported that the Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Basil Williams berated SOCU and the FIU over their inability to secure convictions. But, as I said earlier, most Guyanese are clear on what the role of SOCU was supposed to be.Because Guyanese know what the role of SOCU is supposed to be, the British High Commissioner must say what exactly is the nature work being done by Sittlington and the Government must justify the current operations of SOCU, particularly since Guyana will be reviewed by CFATF soon and the work of SOCU is linked to that review, with the mandate of SOCU being to support the Financial Intelligence Unit to tackle money laundering.Sincerely,Cedric Lordlast_img read more

‘CBL Loans Focus on Poverty Reduction’

first_imgCentral Bank of Liberia (CBL) Executive Governor, Dr. Joseph Mills Jones, has assured the Union of Liberian Associations in the Americas (ULAA) that CBL and its board of governors remain committed to sustaining economic growth in the country despite the negative propaganda against the Bank. Speaking at a program marking the inauguration of officers of the ULAA leadership in the US recently, Dr. Jones emphasized that the CBL loan initiative does not only focus on micro economic stability, but is also waging war on poverty in the country.He said the initiative should be the collective responsibility of all Liberians and not the CBL alone. The CBL boss clarified that claims in some quarters in Liberia and the US that the Bank was misusing the country’s money are misleading and called on Liberians in the Diaspora not to give credence to such assertions.Governor Jones explained that the CBL has, over the years, cooperated with central government in smoothening it’s spending to keep certain national development programs on track by providing short term borrowing facility to the government.He, however, challenged Liberians in the Diaspora to foster economic growth and development back home.The CBL boss is under fire by some politicians on Capitol who have accused him of politicizing the CBL; an allegation the Governor has vehemently denied terming it “empty talk.”Jones has challenged his accusers to adduce evidence that he is using CBL money to run a political campaign, but his accusers are yet to come forward.They recently enacted a legislation amending the CBL Act to ban him, his deputies and the board of governors from contesting any political seat for three consecutive years after the expiration of their respective tenures.Several society groups including the business community who benefits from CBL loan schemes have challenged the bill in court terming it as exclusion and a blatant violation of the Liberian constitution.The actual whereabouts of the bill is still not clear amidst conflicting reports that it is on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s desk, while others are suggesting the President has already signed it into law. Dr. Jones’ second tenure as Governor of the CBL will end in 2016.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

RPAL Convenes National Rubber Congress

first_imgAs the year 2014 approaches its halfway mark, an advocacy group for the rubber sector, the Rubber Planters Associations of Liberia (RPAL) with concentration in the rubber sub-sector is prioritizing its resolutions or work plans, by skillfully putting in gears to jump start their development agenda and making show so that everything as envisaged is materialized before the year goes into oblivion.With this concept in mind and not leaving any stone unturned, this non-governmental organization, in designing its work plan which has cardinal and pertinent issues is convening a National Rubber Congress where Dr. Florence A. Chenoweth, Minister of Agriculture is expected to serve as Keynote Speaker.The congress, an annual event held on a rotational basis was not held in 2013 because of economic reason. But, in 2014, as the economic condition of rubber farmers and the natural rubber as a whole on the downward trend, the congress is now being convened in Gbarnga, Bong County from 23 – 24 May.A few days prior to convening the congress, at a news conference, the Executive Director of the RPAL, Mr. Simeon Z. Woheel said this year’s event is the Fourth of its kind, in post-war Liberia and would gather from across the country 300 participants and representatives  including politicians and stakeholders in the rubber industry.Mr. Woheel said, “The group attending the congress is composed of individuals coming from rubber farms or factories irrespective of the size of their farms or the factories. But they must be rubber plantation owners, planters, processor, buyers or stakeholders”.Executive Director Woheel disclosed that the Congress, with the theme, “Our Rubber – Our Future”, will give an impetus to greatly discuss in length those meaningful and issues relevant to the Liberian natural rubber industry including declining rubber price, rubber theft, the availability of improved planting materials and support for the RPAL.The RPAL was organized by the Liberian rubber farmers and trans-nationals and has been in existence for more than half a century.  It was eventually enacted into Law by the National Legislature in 1966 as a body to represent, foster and protect the interest of the farmers, who are engaged in the Liberia rubber industry by either planting or processing rubber.Mr. Woheel said, “RPAL, during the Congress will seize the opportunity for its members to go to the poll and elect a new code of 25-member officers who will steer the affair of the Association for the next two years”.A major issue for discussion also during the Congress will be centered on the efforts being made by RPAL to solicit assistance from the Government of Liberia and friendly organizations.The Agenda of the Congress will also focus on the setting up of five working committees that will use an eagle eye to pin-point weaknesses and successes of the Association particular on the Liberia natural rubber industry in general; perhaps with the intention to finding amicable solutions to problems affecting the RPAL on one hand, and rubber industry as a whole on the other hand.Committees will be set-up at the Congress which will include Committees on Nursery Development, Decentralization, Subscription, Pricing and Rubber Farm Registration as well as Identification Cards and Rubber Theft.“One cannot predict the steadfastness of the work of the committees. But one thing that is hoped for is that resolutions from the committees’ room will create an avenue for a greater and speedy development of the Association” and the rubber sub-sector, said one small-scale rubber farmer who asked for anonymity.At the moment, RPAL finds itself in a state of financial barb wire that has caused strangulation to the point that it has considerably reduced its staff members and employees from 10 to five in the last four years.The financial situation of RPAL is worsening day after day thus reducing the capacity of the Association to implement planned field activities around the country, especially in the area of nursery development and extension activities.Critics have it that if nothing is done very soon to bring the association from financial crisis, the association will find itself almost to a zero operational level.Presently, Mr. Roger Sherman is the President of the Rubber Planters Association of Liberia. He has been serving in the position since 2008, a time when the Association held its last Congress at the same venue where it is taking place this year.  Mr. Sherman is being assisted by Mr. Emery Dennis as Vice President. The issue of rubber theft has been and still is one cardinal problems that bothers the President of the Association, who himself is a rubber plantation owner.In his last inaugural address, Mr. Sherman put it this way, “The issue of rubber theft is high because of the mobile buying stations operating in the country.  The thieves are physically prepared to combat anyone trying to halt their operations.  But we will do everything that is humanly possible to protect the interest of the RPAL thus enabling every rubber farmer to substantially benefit from the proceeds of their labor”.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Brisbane Laid to Rest in Bomi as 2 US Citizens Test Positive

first_imgDr. Brisbane was a senior medical doctor working at Liberia’s leading referral hospital, the John F. Kennedy (JFK) Medical Center in Monrovia.The JFK’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Billy Johnson, confirmed Brisbane’s demise to the Daily Observer Saturday afternoon. Liberia’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Bernice Dahn, also confirmed Dr.  Brisbane’s death, which occurred at around one o’clock p.m. on Saturday at an Ebola treatment center at ELWA Hospital in Paynesville, near Monrovia. The BBC reports Dr. Brisbane succumbed to the deadly disease after a three-week battle.The late Dr. Brisbane, Liberia’ leading internist, headed the Emergency Unit at the JFK and saw most patients coming there for various treatments. According to reports, he is the first Liberian doctor to die since the outbreak of the deadly Ebola disease.The US-based aid group, Samaritan’s Purse, also said Saturday that an American doctor working in Liberia is sick.A spokeswoman for the group says Dr. Kent Brantly is undergoing intensive medical treatment. She added that patients have a better chance of survival if they receive treatment immediately after being infected, which Brantly did. Dr. Brantly, 33, is married and a father of two.A second U.S. citizen working in Liberia has tested positive for the Ebola virus, Samaritan’s Purse also announced. Nancy Writebol is employed by SIM (Sudan Interior Mission) in Liberia and was helping the joint SIM/Samaritan’s Purse team that is treating Ebola patients at the Case Management Center in Monrovia. SIM manages ELWA Hospital there, and the two organizations have been working closely to combat Ebola since the current outbreak began in Liberia in March.Nancy Writebol serves as a Personnel Coordinator by helping missionaries and short-term teams with their entry into Liberia. She is married to David Writebol who is the Technical Services Manager and SIM’s Eternal Love Winning Africa’s (ELWA’s) complex of 100 buildings. He helps staff provide electrical power, water and other technical services to the campus, which are utilized by the radio station, hospital, elementary and secondary schools on the campus. The couple is blessed with two sons, whom they raised before leaving their careers in the education and software industry to become missionaries.  They have been working with SIM since August 2013.  Prior to coming to Liberia, the Writebols also spent 14 years serving orphans and other vulnerable children in Ecuador and Zambia.WHO says the highly contagious Ebola virus has so far killed at least 672 people in four African countries—Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia now Nigeria.In Sierra Leone, for example, health officials say an Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer, died in an ambulance on the way to a hospital.Meanwhile, Nigeria has stepped up surveillance at its ports and borders, following the country’s first confirmed death from the Ebola virus.Officials confirmed Friday that a man, who died after arriving in Lagos on a flight from Liberia, had tested positive for Ebola.(For the latest news and updates, follow us at this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) The remains of Dr. Samuel Brisbane were buried Saturday night at his home in Bomi County, less than 24 hours after he succumbed to the deadly Ebola virus, the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOH/SW) has confirmed.last_img read more

Customs Brokers End Strike over “Deal”

first_imgThe 40,000 member National Customs Brokers Association of Liberia (NCBAL) has partially ended its strike action, resumed work and will likely reach an agreement today, with the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA).The president of NCBAL, Ivan J.F. Tumbey, said the NCBAL recently halted its protest to negotiate and reach a compromis after several appeals from stakeholders, including Grand Bassa County District # 5 Representative Robertson N. Siaway, the Managing Director of the National Port Authority, Matilda Parker and Commissioner Dorbor Jallah of the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC).Mr. Tumbey said the association was advised to negotiate in the national interest instead of engaging in further confrontations.In an exclusive interview with the Daily Observer over the weekend, Mr. Tumbey said that at the top of NCBAL’s agenda in today’s meeting is tackling the additional fees on the Clean Report of Findings (CRF) and collecting fees of US$50 per 20-foot container and  US$100 per 40-feet container for scanning of Pre-Shipment Containers (PSI) when in fact the scanner is not functioning.Tumbey maintained that the unnecessary additional fees are disturbing and the NCBAL wishes that the LRA should stop such charges until the scanner is functional and the charging power is renegotiated.When asked whether they would resume their strike action if the LRA did not stop the additional fees on the Clean Report of Findings (CRF) and containers, Mr. Tumbey said the question was out-of-order because the LRA boss, Mrs. Elfrieda Tamba, is an honorable woman and woman of her word.“I don’t think Madam Tamba will allow us to choke the budget, the economy and international trade…..because she is an honorable woman,” Mr. Tumbey said.It may be recalled, on Monday, February 2, the customs brokers staged a nationwide strike disrupting clearing of imports at the nation’s seaports, airports and borders, depriving the government of millions of dollars in tax revenues.The NCBAL which contributes nationwide US$2m daily into government coffers has a list of complaints that have so far not been addressed by the LRA or the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning.The Customs Brokers cited unlawful, illegal and unjust collection of taxes from members of the business community by LRA, among other criticisms, and threatened to continue the strike until their terms are met.During the strike action, the Daily Observer gathered that clearing of imports had slowed down denying the Liberian   Government of millions of dollars from tariffs and other import charges.The major ports of entry affected include the Freeport of Monrovia, the Port of Buchanan, the border points in Cape Mount and Lofa Counties as well as the Ganta entry point in Nimba County.Mr. Tumbey said besides the additional fees on the Clean Report of Findings (CRF) and collecting fees of US$50 per 20-foot container and US$100 per 40-feet container, the LRA has appointed additional assessors to already assigned assessors at the DI-sites at the Freeport of Monrovia to re-appraise all cargos, a procedure which he said is outside of the agreement signed between BIVAC and GOL.Only BIVAC is authorized to appraise all cargos at the country of origin, using all of the internationally accepted procedures, according to the agreement between GOL and BIVAC.Mr. Tumbey further alleged that Customs Officers of the LRA and employees of the Ministries of Commerce & Industry and Finance and Development Planning are engaged in Clearing and Forwarding while at the same time carrying on their normal government functions.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Magistrate Sends Murder Case to Circuit Court, With Probable Cause

first_imgMagistrate Richard Browne of the Buchanan City Court in Grand Bassa County has, with probable cause, transferred a murder case to the Second Judicial Circuit Court in the county, following the ruling of the preliminary examination proceeding of the case last weekThe case was formally brought before the court for pre-trial proceeding on September 10 with the dependants Samuel Tarragban, James Reeves, Emmanuel Joludoe, Onegar Zangban, Philip Zeo, and Daniel Ben being charged with murder.At the call of the case, the state was represented by the Ministry of Justice through its prosecuting Attorneys with the Buchanan City Solicitor Isaac Yorcee and Buchanan Assistant City Solicitor Johnson Tukeh, in association with Grand Bassa County Attorney, Cllr. Onesimus Banwon.The county’s Public Defender, Cllr. Paul P. Jarvan represented the legal interest of the defendants.Following the representation, which the court granted, the state moved the court for a plea of nulli prosequio in favor of three of the defendants, Onegar Zangban, Daniel Ben and Philip Zeo, and the Public Defender interposed no objection.The court having granted same, gave an order to the clerk of the court, Samuel Bryant,  and he qualified and sequestrated the state witnesses in the persons of Onegar Zangban, Philip Zeo and Daniel Ben, as well as the Deputy CID Commander of the Grand Bassa County Police Detachment, John W. Toby.The state’s first witness, Onegar Zangban, testified that he met defendants Samuel Tarragban, James Reeves and Emmanuel Juludoe brutally killing Nimley Tarr in an old sugar cane farm near Pay’s Town in District #1, in Grand Bassa County, on August 10, 2014.He further explained that the prime defendants threatened to kill him should he expose the incident to anybody.The second state witness, CID Deputy Commander John W. Toby, in his testimony, narrated that during their preliminary interrogation, the missing man (Tarr) was on August 24, 2014  discovered dead in a sugar cane farm in Pay Toe’s Town in District #1, with the arm and heart missing.  He quoted the testimony of witness Onegar Zangban.In his ruling after the testimonies of the witnesses and arguments between the state prosecution and the defense lawyer, Magistrate Browne said murder is universally considered one of the greatest crimes against society.He reiterated that society must be protected by the law of the land and someone held for that crime must be for probable cause established, and where the evidence proven fails to meet the test, then the law will acquit the accused.According to Magistrate Brown, the state witnesses’ testimonies were reliable, trustworthy and corroborated with the coroner’s jury reports which linked in the proof of circumstantial, presumptive and positive evidence that built a solid chain of probable cause.He underscored that in view and wherefore the state had established probable cause that a crime was committed and the defendants committed murder, they are answerable at the Second Judicial Circuit Court in the county.Based upon his order, the Clerk of the court, Mr. Stephen Quahgar, has transmitted the record of the trial proceedings along with the defendants to the Second Judicial Circuit Court in Upper Buchanan for trial.Meanwhile, the clerk of the Circuit Court, Mr. Emmanuel Quergar, has acknowledged receipt of the records from the Buchanan City Court along with the defendants in question.  Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

NATPAH, Partner Train Women and Girls on Protection of Human Rights

first_imgThe National Association on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women, Girls and Children (NATPAH) has conducted a two-day capacity building workshop to enhance the protection of the rights of women and girls in the country.The two day training brought together 16 networking groups and held recently under the theme: “Enhancing the protection of the rights of women, girls and other discriminated groups in Liberia” at a local resort in Monrovia.Giving an overview of the event, Executive Director of NATPAH Mrs. Phyllis Nguma Kimba, asserted that the Swedish Project seeks to enhance the protection of the rights of women, girls and other discriminated groups in Liberia.She said the project’s total cost is put at US$3millon, and it is expected to run for 5 years, adding that it is being implemented in 4 counties including Montserrado, Gbapolu, Bong and Grand Gedeh County.“In five years, we will reach out to over 5,000 persons, including women, girls and children, as well as, most at risk populations in 45 communities in Montserrado, Grand Gedeh, Gbapolu and Bong Counties,” Mrs. Nguma-Kimba disclosed.She named the Liberian Women Empowerment Network (LIWEN), and Stop AIDS In Liberia (SAIL) as resource partners to the Sida interventions.Also speaking at the event, Ministry of Justice (MOJ) Human Rights Division focal person, Mr. Kutaka D. Togbah, reaffirmed the Ministry’s commitment to protecting the rights of every individual within the borders of Liberia, regardless of their religion, culture and ethnicity.“We will protect the rights of every person in Liberia because it is fundamental to human existence,” Mr. Togbah said. The gathering was jointly organized by two distinct organizations working with women and girls and supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), through Actionaid Liberia.  Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Official Government Gazette

first_imgThe GoL announces with profound regret the death in his 72 year of: Sheikh Kafumba Famod Konneh former Chairman, National Muslim Council of Liberia; Secretary General and Chairman, Inter-Religious Council of Liberia (IRCL) respectively; Commissioner, Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC); Associate Magistrate, LAMCO, Yekepa, Nimba County; Associate Magistrate and Secretary General, Liberia Muslim Union, Nimba County; Renowned Muslim Cleric; Patriot; Senior Citizen; Devout Muslim; Dedicated Public Servant; Republic of Liberia.This sad mournful event occurred at the hour of 5 O’clock post meridian at his residence in Topoe Village, Gardnesville, Montserrado County, Republic of Liberia, after a period of illness.The late Sheikh Kafumba Famod Konneh was born on February 4, 1944 in Saclepea, Nimba County, Liberia, unto the blessed union of Mr. Fombo Konneh and Mrs. Madoye Kromah. His parents predeceased him. He embraced the Muslim Religion at an early age and became a devoted and renowned Muslim Cleric.This astute statesman dedicated his life to public service and religious coexistence. He was a self-educated public servant who started his professional career from 1972 to 1977 as an Associate Magistrate in LAMCO, Yekepa in Nimba County. The following year, Sheikh Kafumba Famod Konneh moved to Sanniquellie and served again as an Associate Magistrate and Secretary General of the Liberia Muslim Union concomitantly in Nimba County. Giving his valuable contributions to public service, particularly in the judiciary, he became Commissioner of Ganta Township in 1979. He moved to Monrovia in 1981 and became a member of the Muslim Congress of Liberia and eventually served as its Secretary General in 1982. He succeeded the late Sheikh Rashid Sheriff as Chairman of the National Muslim Council, a position he held until his demise on July 20, 2015.While serving in these capacities, Sheikh Kafumba Konneh worked tirelessly with his fellow compatriots form various religious denominations under the banner of the Inter-Faith Mediation Council which engaged the warring factions in the Liberian civil crisis for a peaceful resolution. He was instrumented in negotiating numerous peace agreements, including the Accra Comprehensive Peace Agreement that finally brought peace to Liberia. In 2006, Shiekh Kafumba Konneh was appointed as Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Liberia, which was mandated to investigate the root of the Liberian crisis from 1979 to 2003 and to reconcile victims and perpetrators. Sheikh Konneh worked as a full time Commissioner responsible for investigating Liberian history and identifying errors, and was oversight Commissioner for Grand Cape Mount, Bomi and Gbarpolu counties. He was also one of the commissioners known to have attended all of the hearings of the TRC, both in Liberia and abroad.This surely demonstrated his commitment to working for peace and reconciliation in Liberia.Since the completion of work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), Sheikh Konneh Had been engaged with strengthening the National Muslim Council and the Inter-Religious Council of Liberia in ensuring that both organizations would have the necessary capacities to breed new leaders to continue the work for peace and religious coexistence in Liberia.The Sheikh Kafumba Famod Konneh was a father, grandfather, a prominent Muslim Cleric and leader, a skillful negotiator and mediator, a true public servant a repository of Islamic and Liberian history.He was joined in customary matrimony with four wives, the unions of which were blessed with 13 children.With the passing of Sheik Konneh, his family has lost a loving and caring father; his comrades, a strong source of inspiration and courage; and the Muslim Community a renowned Muslim Cleric and Government of Liberia, a dedicated public servant.The late Sheikh leaves to mourn his loss his four widows, thirteen children, and sixteen grandchildren with a host of other relatives and friends both at home and abroad.As a mark of last respect and tribute to the late Sheikh Kafumba Famod Konneh former Chairman, National Muslim Council of Liberia; Secretary General and Chairman, Inter-religious Council of Liberia (IRCL), respectively; Commissioner, Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC); Associate Magistrate, LAMCO Yekepa, Nimba County; Associate Magistrate and Secretary general, Liberia Muslim Union, Nimba County; Renowned Muslim Cleric; Patriot; Senior Citizen; Devout Muslim; Dedicated Public Servant; Republic of Liberia, it is hereby ordered and directed that on the day of interment, the national ensign of the Republic of Liberia be flown at half-mast from all public buildings in Montserrado and Nimba Counties from 8:o’clock ante-meridian to 6:oclock post-meridian.On Tuesday, July 21, 2015, at the hour of 12noon, funeral rites over the remains of the late Shiekh Kafumba Famod Konneh were held at the Antoinette Tubman Sports Stadium, followed by interment in Samukai Town, Caldwell, Montserrado County, Liberia. By order of the President:Augustine Kpehe NgafuanMinister of Foreign AffairsMinistry of Foreign AffairsMonrovia, LiberiaJuly 21, 2015Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more