Change of Heart?

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As reports from House of Representatives over the weekend announced a near-checkmate to the speakership of Rep. J. Alex Tyler, Sr., a growing number of those who signed a resolution to dethrone him are experiencing an uncanny change of heart toward the embattled Speaker.

The Daily Observer has credibly gathered that, so far, Twelve members of the House of Representatives who have signed the resolution to remove Tyler are expected to rescind their decisions. In fact, copies of letters to the Recusal/Removal Committee chaired by Montserrado County District # 5 Representative Thomas Fallah, which are in the possession of this newspaper, show that four lawmakers have already withdrawn their signatures from the resolution. Copies have also been sent to Chief Clerk of the House, Mildred Sayon.

Those who rescinded their decisions and nullified their signatures from the resolution include Grand Gedeh County District #2 Representative Morias T. Waylee, Nimba County District # 3 Representative Samuel G. Z. Woleh, as well as Montserrado County Districts # 12 and #13 Representatives, Richmond Anderson and Saah Joseph, respectively.

‘Unity’ in the House?

Whatever the reasons for the about-faced actions of these previously anti-Tyler lawmakers, this new development – which might be his only saving grace – apparently transcends House politics. They call it ‘unity’.

Reps. Waylee and Woleh in the conclusion of their letters respectively said: “Upon reflection and realizing the need to support peace and harmony amongst members, I hereby rescind and withdraw my signature from said or any resolution.”

For his part, Rep. Anderson wrote: “I wish to retract my earlier position and to inform you that my signature on the resolution is forthwith withdrawn. This position is in no way spite as I quite understand your respect for the House and to protect its integrity. However, I think the unity of the House of

Representatives is most important and wish that you will accept that I play a mediatory role at this critical period.”

In his letter Rep. Joseph wrote: “Further, a decision was reached at the National Executive Committee of my party (CDC) to the effect that we CDC lawmakers must work towards uniting the Legislature rather than taking a position that further divide it.

“In view of the aforementioned, I am herewith withdrawing and rescinding my earlier decision and signature from said resolution.”

The Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) and Liberty Party (LP) lawmakers have also copied the office of House’s Chief Clerk, which is expected to be part of today’s session.

Chief Clerk Sayon, in an exclusive interview, admitted receipt of letters from the four lawmakers but did not say whether they will be read in today’s agenda.

According to reliable reports, Montserrado County District #10 and Bong County District #3 Representatives Julius F. Berrian and George S. Mulbah, respectively, have also withdrawn their signatures.

Main opposition party CDC is said to have warned its lawmakers against fronting divisiveness in the Legislature.

CDC political leader George M. Weah has intoned that the party’s lawmakers should champion unity in the Legislature.

Further reports said the leadership of the National Patriotic Party (NPP) has urged all its lawmakers not to get involved in the signing of resolutions to remove the Speaker.

‘Fight of morality’

As the House resumes today, reports gathered also revealed that the band of rebellious lawmakers remain determined to unseat the Speaker now before the end of this year’s 5th Session on Tuesday, August 30.

Despite the withdrawal of signatures from the resolution to remove Tyler, consultations and meetings are still ongoing among “renegade lawmakers” to oust Speaker Tyler over what they believe is a “fight of morality.”

Most likely, the aggrieved lawmakers are expected to have a meeting today in the Joint Chambers while session is ongoing.

This is the third attempt by members of the House of Representatives to dethrone Speaker Tyler for his alleged receipt of US$75,000 as claimed by the controversial Global Witness report. Global Witness said the Speaker received the money to participate in the changing of the Public Procurement Commission Committee (PPCC) law in favor of the London-based mining company, Sable Mining, to acquire an iron ore consession deal for the Wologizi Mountain in Lofa County.

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