The passage of a bill by the Senate to exclude any officials of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) in future elections, has been criticised by a conglomeration of Civil Society Organizations (SCOs) in the country.
In a strongly-worded statement issued over the weekend, heads of six CSOS expressed their open disagreement and offence with members of the 53rd National Legislature for proffering such a bill.
The six CSOs whose members affixed their signatures to the document denouncing a passage of such a bill at the national Legislature include: the Concerned Students Movement of Liberia, Progressive Students Alliance of Liberia, the Patriotic Intellectuals of Liberia, the Movement for Justice in Liberia, Consortiums of Intellectuals in Liberia, and the Criminal Justice Student Association.
Recently, members of the Upper House passed a bill seeking to disallow any executive governor, deputies and members of the Board of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) from participating in any national political process in the country.
Heads of the CSOs believe that the intention of the Senate for passing a bill to alienate CBL officials from participating in any future national political process was “self-serving, unpatriotic, and therefore, exposed the naked political ambition by some elements of the Senate, evident by one half of the Senate seeking re-election with subsequent presidential ambition.”
They expressed their belief that “the process of making national laws must not be characterized by witch-hunts and pretence, rather it should give attention to the common interest of all sectors of society; this what a country like Liberia deserves.”
According to them, their greatest regret over the Senate’s action is that even in the midst of the nation’s economic impoverishment that continues to deprive its citizens of access to basic social services, “the Senate has resolved to prioritize a preposition that is of absolutely no significance to improving the livelihood of the ordinary Liberian.”
According to the CSOs, this exemplifies how members of the Upper House, once considered the “House of Elders”, have fallen short of the plights of their electorates.
“We think the Liberian Senate should not hide behind its responsibility of lawmaking to create a thoroughfare for shady political manoeuvring; a situation which could produce national civil disobedience.”
“We are mainly concerned on this issue because we see our country once again, reverting to the days when laws were enacted to serve the greedy desires of the powers that be instead of serving the supreme interest of the people,” the statement declared.
Meanwhile, the CSO officials have vowed to vehemently oppose all attempts by the Upper House to circumvent the constitutional rights of others by enacting into law a bill of attainder (confiscation of rights or property).
Because of that, members of the CSOs have called on the leadership of the Lower House to see reason and not follow the “devilish push of the Upper House and ruin its image in the eyes of the public.”