Authoritative reports circulating within the corridors of the Senate state that there are frantic consultations for the passage of a bill seeking to repeal legislation declaring as national holidays the birthdays of presidents Joseph Jenkins Robert and William V. S. Tubman.
The source told our reporter that those involved in the consultations are requesting that instead of separate birthdays for the two former leaders, there should be a single national holiday for all present and former presidents to be called Presidents Day; and because of the importance attached to the birthdays of both presidents Roberts and Tubman, their birthdays can be observed as public (working) holidays.
The bill, which is currently before the Senate, was first introduced by former Bong County Senator (now Vice President) Jewel Howard-Taylor during the 53rd Legislature, but has been resubmitted by River Cess County Senator Francis Paye.
When contacted by our reporter on the possible passage of the Act before the Legislators’ annual break, the senator confirmed that such lobbying is ongoing and the likelihood of Senate’s action may not be far.
It can be recalled that the 42nd National Legislature at its 3rd sitting, declared March 15 of each year a national holiday in commemoration of the birthday of Joseph Jenkins Roberts, the first President of the Republic of Liberia. During that sitting, an Act was also passed declaring November 29 as national holiday for the birth anniversary of the 18th President of Liberia, the late William V. S. Tubman.
In his communication to the Senate plenary early this month, Senator Paye recognized the continued contributions of past and present presidents to the development of the country.
Requesting the repeal of the two national holidays, the River Cess County Senator is asking for the third Friday in November each year to be declared as National Holiday to be observed throughout the Republic of Liberia as Presidents’ Day, in recognition of sacrifices and services rendered by all who served and are serving as President of the Republic of Liberia.
A motion was proffered by Grand Bassa County Senator Jonathan Kaipay, requesting plenary to accept the communication and send same to the committees on Judiciary and Internal Affairs to report within two weeks.