Liberia: House Summons FDA Managing Director for Contempt

The House of Representatives has held in contempt the Managing Director of the Forestry Development Authority (FDA), C. Mike Doryen, for his failure to appear before the body.

Managing Director  Donyen, the Liberia Land Authority, and the leadership of the Community Forest Development Committees were expected to appear yesterday to discuss the management of forests in Liberia but they failed to appear.

This is the first contempt charge of the House of Representatives in the 5th Sitting. The House voted to summon Managing Director Donyen to appear with his counsel before March 8, at 10 a.m., following a motion from Rep. Ivar Jones.

The House's decision was prompted by a complaint from River Gee County District t#3 Representative, Francis Dopoh who requested the House to invite the FDA Managing Directors, the Land Rights Authorities, and the leadership of the Community Forest Development Committees (CFDCs) to answer questions of our forests in Liberia."

"The Forests which are owned by our people are becoming a curse to them. They are not getting the required benefits and or support as intended in the formation of the Forest Benefit Fund. Most of the Forest Communities have not been assigned Community Forest status, least to mention obtaining benefits from the conversion program,” Rep. Dopoe added. 

The River Gee lawmaker added: "Today, as we speak though River Gee County is blessed with many forests and other bountiful resources, River Gee has its people living in poverty and are heavily relying on the scarce resources of the Government. This presents a picture that our forest is becoming a curse than a blessing to our people."

Meanwhile, House has accepted the plea of  Internal Affairs Minister Varney A. Sirleaf to  "take seize of the settling of US$18,000 Social Development Fund" to the people of Margibi County District #2. The Internal Affairs Minister Sirleaf and Margibi County Superintendent Jerry Varney appeared yesterday after being summoned.

The House's decision followed a complaint from Margibi County District #2 Representative Ivar K. Jones, over the lack of disbursement of US$18,000 to the people of District #2 Margibi County, as part of its Social Development Fund.

Following Internal Affairs Sirleaf's plead, a motion proffered by Lofa County District #1 Representative Francis Nyumalin was unanimously voted upon, accepting and mandating the Internal Affairs Minister to seize and settle the US$18,000 Development Fund of Margibi County District #2, and report in two weeks.