Deputy Min. Fahngon, Insults Rep. Snowe at Nightclub

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Fahngon mad because Snowe’s aide took photo of him dancing with a woman

Against the backdrop of the country’s Code of Conduct (CoC), Deputy Information Minister Eugene Fahngon and Bomi County Electoral District #1 Representative Edwin Melvin Snowe were over the weekend caught publicly exchanging invectives on a video posted on Facebook.

In the video, a war of words ensued between the two politicians over a misunderstanding that reportedly erupted between one Kelvin D.J. Mattaldi and Mr. Fahngon.

Reports say Mr. Mattaldi, who is also the media officer in the office of Representative Snowe, reportedly photographed Fahngon while he as allegedly dancing with a woman at a local night club.

The reports detailed that following the photograph, Mr. Fahngon immediately ordered that the photos be deleted. But the situation brought the intervention of state security officers who landed the matter at a police depot in Monrovia.

Thereafter a huge outburst ensued between Snowe and Fahngon to the extent that the lawmaker demanded the immediate release of Mattaldi at the Zone 3 police depot.

Mr. Fahngon and Rep. Snowe were seen in the live Facebook video in an exchange of words, with a slew of expletives coming from the deputy minister. The video, which went viral on social media, also grabbed the attention of some Liberian Facebook users, with many terming the exchanges between the two as “childish.”

“Rep. Snowe was more moderate, but Mr. Fahngon was seen insulting and nearly assaulting the lawmaker,” one person commented.

Meanwhile, Montserrado District #8 Representative Acarous Gray has frowned on the situation, urging the two men to smoke piece pipe for once. Gray said that such exchanges do not augur well for the forward march of the George Weah Administration, and promised to restore calm in the matter.

Several Liberians have also expressed mixed views since the incident.

Liberian Journalist and Lawyer Lamii Kpargoi, in a social media post, said, “if there’s no expectation of privacy, anyone is allowed to take pictures in that space. Many people in this country don’t seem to know that when they are photographed in a public place, no crime has been committed. The police should also not have entertained such complaints.”

Fahngon could also be held in legislative contempt, which is referred to as open disrespect for the legislature, another said.

The behavior of Fahngon also violates section 11.3 of the Code of Conduct, which frowns on unethical and unbecoming behavior, such as the use of rude, abusive and obscene language, another post said.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. All I can say about this video is that Liberia has loss its way and its sanity. Many of the people in public service today including Mr. Fahngon perhaps have no clue of what it means to be public servant, let alone a minister. It is a shame.

  2. All I can say about this video is that Liberia has lost its way and its sanity. The only conclusion I can draw is that most of the people in public service, including Mr. Fahngon have no idea what it means to be a public servant let alone a minister. It is a shame.

  3. In the U.S., there’s a common rule that’s followed based on what the courts have said on the privicy of public officials. That is, that whenever public officials conduct public business, regardless of the platform of that business, their constituents get the right to watch.

    As a public official, you have no privicy in the public. And, what authority does Cabinet officials have over the national police that would cause a minister to cause the arrest of an individual who did not violate any law? Does the Police have internal rules that govern how they go about safeguarding the safety of the citizenry, or do they just arrest anyone at the command of a cabinet level official? That would be troubling.

    This would be a false arrest of the camera man, if all he did was photograph or video record a public official. I would certainly be suing the police for a violation of my civil liberty.

    The House should consider the Minister’s actions for consideration for impeachment, should the President not fire him.

    • In Liberia, it is common practice for a high-ranking government official to order the Police to arrest someone without cause. The Police should not have arrested this guy because he didn’t violate any laws. The country is a rotten mess.

  4. Lawyer Lamii Kpargoi is quoted as saying that “…..Many people in this country don’t seem to know that when they are photographed in a public place, no crime has been committed. The police should also not have entertained such complaints.” BUT is a PRIVATELY owned local night club considered PUBLIC PLACE, where anyone can pay at the door, go in, and take pictures of customers?? I don’t think so. The management (night club) have every right to say “no taking pictures allowed here”.

    • Martin, you’re right. A private club has the right to protect its patrons. In fact clubs would hire their own bouncer to enforce the club rules to the extent it prevent acts within the confines of the Club, including asking violators to leave or preventing culprits from harming patrons. They may be able to detain patrons or culprits who already commit a criminal act until the cops arrive. That will be the limit of restraint they can impose on patrons who breach club rules.

      The issues, from what I read in the above story, are that an individual name Mattaldi, also a patron in the club, took picture or video recording of a public official in a club during the regular operation of the club (e.g., this was not a private event, so it is considered public) opened to anyone who was able to pay and meet the dress code, and he was arrested by Cops on the order of the public official, simply because the official felt his right to privicy was violated and as such it was a crime.

      Had the club felt its rules were being violated, it should have simply advised Mattaldi to cease recording. It however would not have a right to ownership of what Mattaldi had already recorded and neither the cops should’ve gotten involved unless a criminal act had taken place.I don’t get the sense from the story that the club had an issue with Mattaldi when it called the cops. Rather it wanted to make sure the cops presence would prevent violent altercation between the patrons. And so the Cops role was to simply appear and make sure the two sides didn’t get into a fight and take a police report of complaint from the Minister against Mattaldi. He would then have needed to take a copy of the police report and file a petition at court against Mattaldi that crime was committed against him. The court would turn decide if his complaint warrants a summon to Mattaldi for a hearing on the charges. But to have security personnel take action on the order of a public official with no Judicial authority is both an abuse of his power by the public official and a clear violation of Mattaldi’s civil rights.

      Again, as I mentioned in my earlier comment, whenever public officials conduct public business, regardless of the platform of that business, their constituents get the right to know.

      I also don’t believe the Representatives had any right to go directly to the precint and try to get Mattaldi out even though his imprisonment was wrong. He should have gone to court and not only obtained a court order for immediate release, but also a summon against the cops for false arrest. With respect to the Minister, the Representative has Legislative authority to summon the Minister for hearing on his conduct that may be considered impeachable offense.

  5. Minister Fahngon reminds me of the past bad old days of “Do you know who I am ?”
    What crime and law constitute locking someone up as said by Mr. Fahngon on the video? Wow! Leaders in Liberia in 2018 acting like those of the 60’s?. What a shame.

  6. Fahngon’s is becoming a problem for the CDC led Government. Education requires that one must be civil in public regardless of the circumstances. Minister Fahngon’s seems to still have the campaign syndrome. Everytime he talks, it is about how CDC got to power. This Administration has done nothing positive for the PUBLIC to be PROUD of. Liberians are regretting for the MISTAKE they made by putting CDC in Power and Mr. Fahngon’s is making it bad. The Country is at a standstill and Liberians are wondering where are they heading? This Government must realize that it is not well with the PUBLIC.

  7. Those of you who want to blame Fahngon are in the wrong. The minister was in a private setting. His privacy takes precedence. In fact, release of a prisoner has a process. Snowe knows that. Did he as a lawmaker follow the law and process? Obviously NOT.

  8. Fahngon and his lies will only do that mess in Liberia where so-called big shots are exempt from the rule of law. He was in a public place and therefore could be photographed provide the establishment has no rule banning electronic devices.
    We need to stop making excuses for grown men acting like kids.These were the same behaviors the likes of Fahngon frowned upon when he was on the other side of the fence.
    Martin Scott please teach ur Pekin Dem how to be diplomatic.,😂😂😂😂

  9. If he doesn’t wants to be photograph, he should enjoyed himself at his residence where all rules will be applied and he will enjoy privacy. The behavior exhibited by Deputy minister Fahngon towards Hon.Edwin Melvin Snows was gross disrespect to the entire house of representatives and he should be penalized for his actions. I witness the video and he even when as far saying this is not Unity Party government this is our government such statement should be rebuke by the minister and an open apology to the law Maker.

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