Rep. Koffa in Consultations to Join Deputy Speaker Race

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Rep. J. Fonati Koffa (right), who supported the Speakership bid for Rep. Bhofal Chambers (left) in 2018 says he has not yet made up his mind as to whether he will contend for the Deputy Speaker post.

The chairman of the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives, Rep. Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa is said to be holding consultations as to whether or not to join the race for the Deputy Speaker position that is to be vacated by Bong County Representative Prince Moye who has won a nine-year senatorial seat.

The Grand Kru County District #2 Representative has accordingly been petitioned by some of his colleagues to join six other Representatives eyeing the Deputy Speaker position, and has since launched “consultations” on the prudence of his participation in the battle.

Even though there is no law that bars him from contesting the postion on the basis of regional and county origin with the President and the Speaker as it is with the President and the Vice President who are not to come from the same county, the George Weah Administration has concentration of top political leaders from the South-east; the President from Grand Kru where Representative Koffa hails, the Speaker from Maryland right by Grand Kru, and the President Pro-Tempore from Grand Kru also.

On Saturday, Rep. Koffa replied to scores of journalists: “Well, anything is possible… I am holding consultation.”

Those tipped to express interest in the position include House’s ECOWAS Parliament member, Lofa county District #3 Representative Clarence Massaquoi; Education Committee Chairman, Rep. Johnson Gwaikolo of Nimba County District #9; Commerce Committee chairman Rep. Samuel Kogar (Nimba County District #5); Rep. Moima Briggs-Mensah of Bong County District #6, and Rep. Richard Koon of Montserrado County District #12.

Sources say if Rep. Koffa joins the race, he and Rep. Gwaikolo with Rep. Clarence Massaquoi would be the three formidable candidates for the possible replacement of outgoing Deputy Speaker Prince K. Moye.

Impeccable sources said the House’s Judiciary Committee chairman had been pushed to join following a meeting of about 25 Representatives on Friday night in a local hotel.

One of those at the meeting said the “like-minded” Representatives present agreed to front Cllr. Koffa despite associated factors such as geographical region and political party;, arguing that Koffa has “Big heart, is open-handed and educated’ to ably assist in steering the affairs of the Honorable House of Representatives and outside.”

Rep. Koffa’s Bloc?

Rep. Koffa has appeared to be a strong candidate among other Representatives, according to a lawmaker from Montserrado, pointing out that since 2018, the “Koffa Bloc” comprising about 24 lawmakers has been together and determined.

In 2018, Rep. Koffa was poised to contest the Speaker election against Rep. Bhofal Chambers and Rep. Hans Barchue, but was compelled to “throw in the towel” and he pledged support to Rep. Bhofal Chambers. Because of Rep. Koffa’s 11th hour support to Rep. Chambers, Rep. Barchue withdrew from the Speaker race allowing Rep. Chambers to win on white ballot.

Rep. Koffa also supported Rep. Moye, who emerged victorious over Rep . Barchue in the tight Deputy Speaker’s race.

Confirmed

“It is true that l have been asked to join the race for the Deputy Speaker position because I am qualified for it, but I haven’t made up my mind — I am consulting,” Cllr. Koffa said.

He indicated: “I am not aware of the meeting you are talking about and even if I were aware, I would not divulge any details because I am not the spokesperson of whatsoever bloc.”

Election Day

The Deputy Speaker election might probably be held on January 11 or at most on Thursday.

Accordingly, the Legislature will resume work the second working Monday in January – January 11, 2021, at which time there will be a formal program. Four former Representatives who have become Senators-elect including Deputy Speaker Prince Moye, Rep. Edwin M. Snowe, Rep. Zoe Pennue and Rep. Jeremiah Koung might present their elective letters to the Secretary of the Senate for subsequent swearing-in as Senators on Tuesday or Thursday creating four by-elections in four counties. Their departure will leave the membership of the House at 67.

If Representatives-elect Saah Teah Foko and Samson Wiah present their respective elective letters from NEC, they will be sworn in and the Representatives will increase to 69. Foko and Wiah will replace the late Rep. Munah Pelham Youngblood and Jay Nagbe Sloh respectively having won the by-elections.

Expectedly, 69 Representatives will vote or in a rare case — more than 69 lawmakers might vote.

Rare Case

There are legal grounds for Senators-elect; Rep. Edwin M. Snowe, Rep. Zoe Pennue and Rep. Jeremiah Koung to participate in the Deputy Speaker election if the trio delayed or failed to submit their elective letters from the NEC to Senate, thereby still making them Representatives.

Or in the event where any of the three is in court as the case may be with Koung now, of which NEC hasn’t given an elective letter, that Representative also has the right to vote in the Deputy’s election because he remains a Representative.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Given the tremendous sway tribalism has over our body politick, it will be not only foolhardy but suicidal to elect another south-easterner as speaker, thereby concentrating the powers of the Executive and Legislative branches of government in the same tribe. The current so-called speaker is already an echo-chamber of the executive branch of government, then we want to squander the little opportunity to check or balance that power configueration?

    The 25 members of the House reportedly enticing this Koffa guy with a criminal history to run for the deputy speakership must themselves be criminals, or are bunch of morons. These are some of the reasons why many of the current set of representatives need to be replaced in the next election, to give way to smart thinking representatives with the foresight to predict dangers before they happen. Apparently our current batch of representatives know nothing of balance of power. Either that, or they place personal interests over that of the national good. But we are watching and will be keeping stock of who does what, moving forward.

    • When one get so embedded into hatred and tribalism for a particular group of people, they tend to lose their sense to reason justifiably. Mr. Gboyo, remember the Southeast is not a single county, it comprises 5 of Liberia’s 15 counties. I don’t get the level of hasty generation that some “intellects” are disseminating to the public about the South East people. During Ellen’s government, no one complained when Ellen, Tyler and Snowe where from the same county. Not forgetting they also had Armah Jallah of Gbarpolu as Senate Pro tempore. During Taylor’s government, Brumskin his cousin and Senator from Bassa was also Senate Pro tempore and his two vice presidents were from Nimba.

      Is it the Southeastern people’s fault that no one really cares to group Nimba, Bong, Bassa and Margibi as Central Liberia, or Gbarbolu, Cape Mount, Lofa, and Bomi as Northwest Liberia?

      Are the Southeasterners in the villages living in mansions or are those from Nimba or Lofa being unfairly marginalized.

      This is the same nonsense that led to the Rwanda genocide when people murdered entire villages just because someone from their region made it to national leadership.

      If you want to express your opposition to the Weah’s led government, please do so freely but spreading hatred against a particular group of people is very wrong.

      THIS NEEDS TO STOP!!!!!

  2. I wish that the do-nothing lawmakers would take a minute or two to pay attention to Dr. Tipoteh. Dr. Tipoteh calls for “community interest, not self-interest”. In this particular situation, I will define community interest as “county interest”. (That’s probably not what Dr. Tipoteh has in mind, but I will try). In other words, the lawmakers’ counties of origin (where their constituents live) should be considered as community interest. The interest of one’s county should be considered as priority number one.

    Sadly, that has never been the case with the Liberian lawmakers. The Liberian lawmakers have always made themselves their topmost priority. As the lawmakers jockey amongst themselves for clout and positions of influence, none of them shows enthusiasm for the improvement of schools. But at the same time, our 12 grade students perform below par almost every year on their standardized tests.

    Questions……
    Why do our students continue to go downhill academically?
    Is it because the students are dimwitted?

    Answer:……
    Not at all!
    The do-nothing lawmakers care more about their “self-interest”. They show no interest for their respective communities or their counties of origin.

    • Now, as I told your companion in regime-apology last night, continue this trend of truth telling and your hide will be safeguarded against from any unwarranted battery or assault around here as the case may be. That’s all that’s required, truth telling and whether in censureship one day and adulation the next day, just be objective and for the sake of making our common patrimony better. Not for any self-centered pursuit. That will obviously save the day. Otherwise, you are fair game! After all, none of you could be more Liberian than the rest of us.

    • Perhaps, changing from the U.S’ system of education does not serve well. Why do we have to be like everyone-else. Liberians, educated under The U.S’s System went on to excel in many fields of academics. *If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it. We [Liberians] keep doing much harms to ourselves. Yet, we blame it-all on others. MCSS was structured under the U.S’ San Francisco system; one of the best. I wonder, why did our Liberian [Leadership] change course/format? Absolutely! it makes no sense.🤔

  3. The Chairman of Judiciary Committee in the Senate is an indicted criminal and the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee is an indicted criminal deported criminal, Wow ! How is this possible that the same two criminals were indicted by a foreign country and assets ceased. These are the kind of citizens that this God Forsaken Land can offered to the world as its best respectable citizens, and not embarrassed by these cowardly criminals. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha !
    Now, one of the notorious criminals wants to be a heartbeat from the presidency. Even that God Forsaken land is worse than the Biblical Nazareth, whereby it was noted and asked if any good can come from that land ?
    No, not Liberia. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ! Not Liberia? NO, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ! The criminals in charged of the Judiciary Committees in the House of Laws in that God Forsaken Country. Wow ! Laughing Out Loud. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA ! What A Country ?

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