Senate Confirms Kemayah, Urges Complainant to Go to Court

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Ambassador Dee Maxwell Kemayah has been confirmed as Foreign Minister, amid allegations of sexual harassment leveled against him.

-But Senator Dillon strongly objects; decries lack of due diligence in the August body

Through a reported vote of yea (and not head count), the Senate yesterday voted to confirm Liberia’s Foreign Minister-designate, Ambassador Dee-Maxwell Kemayah, amid reports of alleged sexual harassment and passport scandal that have rocked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The confirmation of Amb. Kemayah followed recommendation from a report signed by three members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, following two public hearings at the Capitol.

There is no indication as to who voted for or against Kemayah’s confirmation since the Senate abandoned the voting record system — only that there was a majority of ‘yay’ responses when the vote was raised.

Upon his nomination as Foreign Minister-designate, Kemayah, who had been serving as Liberia’s permanent representative to the United Nations in New York, was suddenly slapped with an allegation of sexual harassment by Ms. Whynee Cummings Wilson, a staffer at the mission he heads. And while Ms. Wilson claims that the incident took place on her birthday in January, she said she was only now speaking out about the alleged incident in support of the recent three days of protests against rape in Monrovia. She also said that if she remained quiet about what she claims Amb. Kemayah did to her, it would be tantamount to rewarding a predator.

Meanwhile, Kemayah has flatly denied the allegation as baseless and an attempt to tarnish his reputation and track record of service. In the absence of evidence that the alleged incident ever took place, Ms. Wilson has challenged Amb. Kemayah to a polygraph (lie-detector) test.

In the findings that followed its recommendation, the Senate committee on Foreign Affairs noted that after an administrative probe, it has realized that there are limitations to the extent to which the probe into the alleged sexual harassment accusation can continue. The committee’s report asserted that there is a thin line between the Legislative and the Executive branches of government. The committee furthered “that, in as much as it takes sexual harassment as a grave matter, it requires a full and detailed investigation. The committee does not have the tools of police and investigative agencies to establish a legal merit and/or demerit of this case; the committee seeks to do what the Constitution provides of the Legislature to do in such a case, that is to do an administrative hearing.”

Take the matter to court

In that regard, the committee intimated that an administrative hearing has been conducted, “and finds the nominee fit and suitable in all other aspects that require our consent, except for the allegations of sexual harassment which has been assessed, but not conclusive.”

The committee’s findings continued: “The committee, as such, understanding its limitation in adjudicating a judicial matter between two of its citizens, is left with no alternative but to request anyone of the parties to take this matter to court, that will give them the appropriate remedy or justice.”

In briefing Legislative reporters after the committee report was read, Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darius Dillon, who was not among those who voted for Amb. Kemayah, expressed serious reservation over the manner which, he said, the Senate was conducting confirmation hearings, saying it was slowly killing the Senate.

Senator Dillon agreed that the now-confirmed Foreign Minister has all the academic credentials, with unquestionable service to country, “but when there is a complaint of grave nature filed against anybody including a nominee, it is fair for us to give that complain a listening ear. It is no secret that the Foreign Affairs Committee has acted wrongly from the get-go over this nomination of Kemayah.”

Senator Dillon asserted that the complainant could either be lying on Mr. Kemayah or saying the truth, and the only thing he said that could clear the doubt is to hear from his accuser.

“The Liberian Senate committee did not do due diligence; it deliberately cut all good judgement aside to make a recommendation in which it has indicted itself and the Liberian Senate. The Senate voted to confirm Kemayah, leaving this thing hanging over his head. He could be innocent, but the fact is that we failed to do the proper thing and… we are leaving something on this man’s head. What if, tomorrow, this lady’s claim of sexual harassment turns out to be true? What standing will this Liberian Senate have to call Kemayah a sexual harasser after confirming him?”

Nwabudike Again

Sen. Dillon recalled that it is the same lack of due diligence on the part of the Senate that has got them in the current mess with Counselor Ndubuisi Nwabudike, who was initially confirmed as chairman of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission long before it was discovered that Nwabudike had faked his Liberian citizenship.

“This one, we know it. We could make claim that we did not know that Nwabudike was not a citizen at the time that we confirmed him first; now that we know, the Liberian Senate lacks the spine to take the bold step and let the President know formally to remove Nwabudike. The same thing is happening again.”

Meanwhile, Senator Dillon lamented that the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, Albert Tugbe Chie, cleverly refused to acknowledge his attempt to file a motion for reconsideration, but accepting the one filed by Senator Peter Sonpon Coleman, who the Pro Tempore knew would eventually withdraw the motion. “But he knows that I would follow through if I filed that motion for reconsideration,” Dillon said.

12 COMMENTS

    • And this is all these other ones have to comment, because during and at the end of the legislatively authorized and required mechanism (an administrative hearing) the committee took the constitutionally required tenets and principles of both the inclusive legal positivism and the exclusive legal positivism into account, and reached a fair and just decision.

      You people will have to learn that it is wrong and dangerous when people can see no further beyond their selfish and myopic wishful thinkig. No seasoned legislative senate committee, taking into account the context of this matter (INNOCENT UNTIL NOMINATED) which lacks both direct or even any sane circumstantial evidence, would have reached a decision other than what this Foreign Affairs Committee of the GREAT LIBERIAN SENATE has reached.

      In other words, the political enemies of Ambassador Kemayah foolishly got convinced that since, based on the indomitable equilibrium, and astute diplomatic excellence of Ambassador Kemayah, he would no doubt beat the usual invasive scrutiny, and the sometimes cruel and punishing publicity nominees face during confirmation hearings, THEY CONSPIRATORS must plant political minefields of hidden agendas and personal vendettas against this great Liberian patriot and seasoned diplomat Dee Maxwell Kemayah!

      THE CONSPIRATORS goal being to discourage and even damage this successful diplomat to prevent the Liberian people from benefiting from THIS GREAT VESSEL OF OF THE NATION’S WISHES AND VISION!!

  1. Wow! So this senate confirmed this sexual harasser without even hearing the side of the lady that he allegedly harassed? No wonder rape is one of the highest crimes against women in this country, but the least investigated.
    But what do we really expect from a senate committee whose chairman is a former “gboyo” from Maryland? Liberia is governed by former warlords and Gboyos, so sexual harassers go scout free to sexually harass more women in the future.

    Tolo Bonah Corfah

  2. Tolo Bonah Corfah,
    Stop what you are doing. Marylanders do not have the word “gboyo” anywhere in the county.
    By saying gboyo, you are using someone’s name (for instance, Peter Gboyo) who has no connection to Maryland. Try using the word “boyo”. Boyo in the Seaside Grebo vernacular means “pig”!

    The Story Behind The word Boyo…………
    When the killing spree was going in those days on by a notorious gang of ritualistic killers during the presidency of Tubman, the poor natives of the county were traumatized and terrorized. Although president Tubman considered himself a derivative of Maryland, he did not bother to put a stop to those who ritualistically killed their fellow human beings.

    The Main Event……..
    A victim of the ritualistic killers was put in the bag. The killers thought that their victim was dead. But he wasn’t! When the killers approached a service station in order to gas up, the poor man called for help. The ritualistic killers immediately said that there was a pig in the bag, not a human being! Sadly, the poor man’s help was ignored. Why? Because the gas station attendants and everyone who heard the call for help were poor, uneducated natives who were threatened by the egregious ritualistic killers. When the news broke, the poor natives explained their side of the story by saying……. “they said it was a pig…….boyo” in the bag, not a human being in the bag! The “they” the gas station attendants referred to were the the ritualistic killers. (Of course, those killers will have their day in the court of God).

    I wasn’t there when this terrible incident occurred. Thanks be to God! That’s the story.

    The fact that a human being has to be murdered in order to get a job or get a promotion on one’s job is unthinkable. And yes, the killing of poor people went on for a very long time in Maryland county during the presidency of William Tubman. I didn’t say Tubman participated in ritualistic killing. I only question his wisdom.

    By Comparison:
    Trump is being dennounced and repudiated because of his poor handling of the Coronavirus pandemic. Even though he is not probably the creator of the deadly virus, Trump gets the blame because his handling of the situation has been very ineffective.

    But in Liberia, although Tubman was living in Monrovia most of the time when the ritualistic killings went on and on in Maryland, no one (not even a man) could blame Tubman. Looka, Tubman has got a national holiday in his honor. Yes, Tubman did a few good things, but ………..?

    I hate changing the topic. I went off because I wanted to tell the story behind the story of boyo. Corfah, if you want to spell the word Gboyo, in order to describe a killer, it’s your decision!

  3. Weah’s government will definitely go down in the Guinness Book of record as the most irresponsible and inept JUNTA in the 21 first century. Wokie Wokie!

  4. The proverb that says, “If you really want to know who a man truly is, give him some power and/or money.”, is true most of the time! It is so shameful that some people who one would think have some moral virtues and character in them would let you down at any importunity that comes their way to prove themselves. This behavior is more glaring especially when such individual or individuals are sitting at the pinnacle of power.

    It is understood that these senators will face a lot of pressure if they are suspected of “disrespecting the president” if they carry out a thorough scrutiny of anyone he appoints in government, and sent to the legislature for vetting. This process of scrutiny in government is called the legislative oversight. This particular power is unique to the Legislative Branch.

    The duties of our legislators are, inter alia, making laws of the land, approving the national budget, and oversight responsibilities. These are the reasons why they were elected to represent the distinguished citizens of the Republic of Liberia, their constituents. The responsibilities they hold are enormous indeed. Their duties, as the first branch of the national government, could make or break the fabric of the nation which boasts of being democratic.

    To make a long story short, the outcome of this particular vetting process is nothing short of a glaring dereliction of a sacred duty to the nation and its people by legislators upon whose shoulders rests an enormous power in the paramount interest of the state.

    No! Honorable senators, the case that came before you was not for the Judiciary Branch of government (the courts), but rather a vetting process of an appointed government official. It is ONLY the Legislative Branch of government that has the authority, constitutionally, to exhaust all the quarries and concerns surrounding this vetting process.

    You failed the citizen who made this complaint; you failed the government in carrying out your oversight duties; and you failed the people of Liberia who put their trust in you to represent them in the senate. It hurts when you personally know some of these gentlemen in the senate.

  5. Congratulations to our new Foreign Minister. Please go out there and represent Liberia, our beloved country, VERY WELL. I pray the wisdom of King Solomon upon thee in the discharge of duties. Amen.

  6. Charlse Anders

    Very good thoughts Charlse, and what I felt was most thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating about your comments was where you mentioned the concept of legislative oversight and the profound responsibilities that are constitutionally entrusted to the legislators to make sure that this function is done right.

    One memorable event that came to mind as you carried us through a brief drill of the legislative oversight process, was a vetting process case that came before the legislative body of the United States Congress years ago. This process involved the Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, who was vying for the position he now occupies, versus Dr. Anita Hill, the renown university professor, who brought a sexual harrassment complaint against him at the time.

    And as you are quite aware, this hearing was very grueling and rigorous in contrast to many other legislative hearings. At one time Judge Thomas nearly crash emotionally as he thought his chance of being absolved of the charge of sexual harassment had become slim. Nevertheless, the legislative hearing had its full course, and he was vindicated.

    Unfortunately, some folks in this forum have a veil that is covering their eyes, and it makes them unable to critically analyze the points and see them in light of your perspective. They see everything only in the eyes of CDC versus the opposition, and not what adverse implications some issues may hold for the collective, national security of the country. In other words, Mr. Kemayah is a CDC favorite, and so the process is flawless because it was botched in his favor.

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