Twist in Wologisi Mountain Negotiation

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The standoff on the concession of the Wologisi Mountain, located in Lofa County, since the inception of the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf administration in 2006 has taken another twist, with the County Legislative Caucus revealing, “open negotiations,” with the Executive branch and investors.
Wologisi Mountain has the second highest peak next to Mount Nimba and its exploitation might be worth millions of dollars.
The Chairman of the Lofa County Legislative Caucus, Rep. Moses Y. Kollie said President Sirleaf has written the Caucus regarding negotiations on the Wologisi Mountain owing to an interest shown by an investor.
The Lofa County District # 5 Representative said, “The Caucus has agreed to open for a negotiation, but formal negotiation has not started.”
He said the Caucus, that is the direct representation of the over 200,000 citizens in the county, would tread cautiously as to what is in the concession for the people and the county before approving of any deal.
This is the first time the Caucus has publicly accepted negotiations over the Wologisi Mountain, amid reports that the Caucus visited China during the era of Sen. Sumo Krupee, though Sen. Krupee denied having formal negotiations with the Chinese.
Besides the expressed interest of the People’s Republic of China on the exploitation of the Wologisi Mountain, an Indian company, O.P. Jindal Group, has also expressed similar interest.
It may be recalled that during the visit and meeting with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Chinese business entrepreneurs and investors recently President Sirleaf encouraged the Chinese to explore the Wologisi interests.
“I know over the years China has expressed interest in the Wologisi Mountain and I hope you’ve been talking with the Minister of Lands, Mines and Energy on that, to see what it is. Wologisi is the last major iron ore asset we have now and so we are all trying to be careful how we handle it.
“I just suggest that you continue to discuss with the minister who will also talk to the people of Lofa County, as part of our reform – people that own the assets. Even though the central government owns it but those people that are involved in discussions in the county are important. You can talk to the County authorities or start the process of discussion by getting everybody who has any interest or rights. Our legislators in the county need to be involved in the discussions as well.”
Meanwhile, the Lofaians in the US under the umbrella of the Federation of Lofa Associations in the Americas (FLAA) has set up a Wologizi Mountain Committee and has requested the Lofa Legislative Caucus for updates and its input before entering into a concession agreement for the exploration of the Wologizi Mountain.

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