The chairman of the Bomi County Legislative Caucus Senator Morris Saytumah says as far as he and his colleagues are concerned, there has been no change in the leadership of Bomi County Community College (BCCC); and therefore the student body that has raised concerns about an impending replacement should remain calm and go about its regular businesses.
He told a group of students, who presented an unread petition to him and his group last Tuesday on Capitol Hill, in Monrovia, that it is not to their knowledge because they have not recommended anyone to President George Manneh Weah to replace current president Dr. Zobong Norman.
Senator Saytumah told the students that while they have every right to seek information, it is not good for them to raise an issue on what seemed to have been a rumor concerning the impending replacement of Dr. Norman.
He called on the students to remain calm and pointed out that it is because of the impressive work that Dr. Norman and his team are doing at the BCCC that he, along with others, are sponsoring several students at the college.
“Don’t seek clarification from rumors,” Senator Saytumah told the students. “And so you must return to Bomi County and carry on your educational pursuit.”
Rep. Edwin M. Snowe told students that he received several communications demanding to know if he was aware of any change at the BCCC.
“I know the great work that Dr. Norman has done and is doing at the BCCC,” Rep. Snowe said, “but we should remember that it is the President of Liberia that makes an appointment based on a recommendation by the school’s Board of Directors.” He called on students to return to Bomi County and resume classes as usual.
He also informed them that they could not create a petition on what has not happened, even though he said in Liberia there is no smoke without fire; and therefore the students could be speaking from what they may have heard was in the making.
Bomi County Senator Sando Johnson and several lawmakers were present at the outdoor meeting with the students on Capitol Hill.
Earlier, as Senator Saytumah, Rep. Snowe and others were about to meet with the students, they (students) remained vocal, waving placards that read: “President Weah: BCCC is Normal,” “Dr. Norman The College Elevator,” “Dr. Norman No Replacement,” among others.
It may be recalled that the Bomi County Community College (BCCC) is the first community college to be built in the country. But the college had suffered from inadequate development projects until Dr. Norman took over two years ago. The student community and residents of Bomi County have expressed appreciation on improved development that has come to BCCC since Dr. Norman took over as president.
His major challenge, residents and students say, is the inability of the college’s Board of Directors to work with him. They said there have been several occasions in which the Board of Directors has refused to honor invitations to commencement convocations. As a result, there have been incessant calls for the reconstitution of the Board of Directors so that it could play its statutory role to provide leadership for the college.
Dr. Norman and his team at BCCC have brought enough innovation to the college, according to a statement issued by the college at its recent 6th commencement convocation.
At the 6th commencement convocation, Dr. Norman noted that no institution, whether big or small, can run well without operational policies. “Our board of trustees, which is supposed to lead or make policies to govern the college, has failed to perform this task. We are proud to note that BCCC, for the first time, has produced a financial manual, procurement manual, administrative and student handbook,” he said.
He continued, “These policies are greatly enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of the college.”
Meanwhile through collaboration, Dr. Norman has secured 200 acres of land for palm oil production, to earn income for the college as well as start agricultural projects to expand the BCCC’s field experiment to give students firsthand experience in their chosen field of study.