Minister of Health to Face Senate over Utterances on US$15k Legislators Allotment

Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah.

The plenary of the Liberian Senate has  mandated its Statutory   Committee on Health chaired by Sinoe County Senator Augustine Chea to cite Health Minister, Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah,  to clarify her recent assertion made against the Legislature that the purpose of  USD$15,000  previously  given to each Legislator wasn’t clearly defined.

The action of the Senate’s Plenary was based on a communication written by River Gee County, Senator Jonathan Boy Charles Sogbie.

It can be recalled that Senators and Representatives received US$15,000 each through budgetary allocation for Legislative engagement, for which Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darrius Dillon, donated USD$ 7,500 to the Montserrado County Health Team in support of the fight against COVID-19.

Upon hearing about the donation, the Health Minister Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah wrote the Head of the Montserrado County Health Team, Dr. Yatta Wapoe to return the US$7,500 donation by Senator Abraham Darrius Dillion.

Meanwhile, Said amount was subsequently returned to the office of the Senator on Tuesday July 20, 2021. 

The Health Minister in the communication informed Dr. Yatta Wapoe that in the Incident Management System (IMS) meeting, held on Saturday, June 19, 2021, IMS appreciated Sen. Dillion’s kind gesture, but however asked her to inform him that the IMS CANNOT accept such a donation from the Senator or any other Legislator at a time of ongoing polemic and public outcry concerning the source and exact purpose of the funds. 

The Health Minister also told Dr. Yatta Wapoe in her communication that the IMS notes that she receives donations from private individuals and organizations, but in this case, the IMS is cautious of the sources of the resources amidst its challenges, adding “kindly return to the Senator said donation until further clarification.”

 Notwithstanding, the MOH boss told Dr. Wapoe that the IMS looks forward to the supplementary budgetary allocation from the Honorable Legislature to enhance  her fight against the deadly disease.

The committee is expected to report two weeks after the Independence break.