2 Lawmakers Raise Concern on Speaker’s Regular Travels with the President

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Speaker Bhofal Chambers

-Bid Judiciary Chairman Well for Continuing Legal Education

Two members of the House of Representatives have raised concern on the frequent trip of Speaker Bhofal Chambers with President George Manneh Weah.

On Thursday, April 26, at the 23rd day sitting, Margibi County District #4 Representative Ben Fofana and Sinoe County District #2 Jay Nagbe Sloh in separate remarks told their colleagues that the issue is disturbing.

The lawmakers’ worry followed the House Speaker’s trip with the President to Brazzaville, the Republic of Congo.
The President’s letter to the House of Representatives said while he is away from the country, the Minister of State, Mr. Nathaniel F. McGill will serve as Coordinator of the Cabinet in consultation with the Vice President and in a telephone consultation with him.

However, Rep. Fofana said the absence of Speaker Bhofal Chambers because of his trip with the President is worrying, while Rep. Sloh said it is not a good security measure for the Speaker to regularly travel with the President.

The House of Representatives bids Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa well in bis continuing legal educational sojourn

In response, Acting Presiding Officer, Deputy Chief Clerk Prince Moye told his colleagues that it was the Speaker’s first time to travel with the president, which was during their break and therefore it was not noticeable.

Several members in yesterday’s session said: “He (Speaker Chambers) is compromising the House of Representatives.

Others said: “If this continues, we need to do something about it.”

However, members of the House of Representatives decided to defer discussion of the matter to an executive session.

Meanwhile, the House of Representative has noted the letter from the Judiciary Committee chairman, Rep. Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa that wished him well for his travel to the United States to continue his legal education.

Cllr. Koffa earned a Juris Doctor Degree (JD Degree) in 1998 at the University of North Carolina School of Law. The JD Degree is the highest education available in the legal profession in the United States and is considered a professional degree.

He is a member of the Bar Association in North Carolina and the Supreme Court of Liberia.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Rep. Sloh has a good point. The speaker of the house is the third in line of succession in the event of an abrupt crisis (state of emergency)…, and therefore, should not be travelling with the President. I hope that the Chief of staff of the Executive Mansion will advise the President for future trips.

  2. There are THREE (3) Main Law Degrees conferred in the USA:
    JD: first degree in law/LLB in Liberia (Bachelors degree AKA Juris Doctorate)
    LLM: second degree in law (Masters of Law)
    SJD: third degree in law (PhD) (Doctor of Juridical Science)

  3. is he going for an LLM (master’s) or a JSD (PhD) I hope he can learn something while he is there. Also, why should these people travel with the president. These bloodsuckers need to me removed.

  4. Why don’t people understand that Speaker Chambers has already sold his soul to Oppong? This is someone who, upon his election as speaker, paid homage to the president for keeping his promise to make him (Chambers) speaker. So the speaker has to pay back with his loyalty. Another rubber stamp legislature.

  5. Lawmakers are not infallible. Hence, it can be argued that despite their false alarm bells about security issues, Speaker Chambers’s infrequent travel with the president does not violate any protocol. The lawmakers in this particular situation are Jay Nagbe and Fonati Koffa. Although I respect the lawmen, I disagree with them because on two of the occasions when Speaker Chambers traveled with the president, the nation’s VP Mrs. Jewel Taylor, was not a member of the President’s entourage. Also, the constitution of Liberia does not say that the “president of Liberia shall not travel together on a private or an official business trip. I wish that the lawmakers could do an introspection. I wish that the lawmakers would ask the following questions:

    * Does it make sense for Liberians not to use coins?

    * Does it make sense for us as lawmakers to be paid over $35,000 a year whereas some teachers with college degrees make less than $275.00 a month?

    More questions could be asked though.

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