VP Taylor Challenges Senators to Declare Assets

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Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor.

Vice President and President of the Senate, Jewel Howard Taylor has challenged Senators who are still delinquent in declaring their assets that the deadline to do so has expired.

While presiding over the Senate’s 13th day sitting on Tuesday, February 26, 2019, Madam Howard-Taylor said: “I will just like to remind the Senate of the assets declaration’s requirement; the deadline has passed, and it will be good for members of the Senate to submit their assets to the secretary of the Senate so that the report can be submitted as to those who have done theirs.”

She informed the lawmakers that members of the Judiciary Branch of Government have completed their assets, while the Executive Branch, is working towards completing theirs; “I think members of the Legislature, who belong to the First Branch should be the first to complete this requirement.”

Several weeks following his election as President Pro Tempore of the Senate last year, Senator Albert Chie called on his colleagues to fulfill the Constitutional requirement by declaring their assets.

The Vice President’s call yesterday comes on the heels of a letter from the office of President George Weah mandating all those within the executive branch, who need to declare their assets within a specific time frame.

The call by both President Weah and his Vice President for government officials to declare their assets has come days following a British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) video interview in which President Weah confirmed declaring his assets, but admitted that some members of the government, especially the executive branch, are yet to complete that requirement. When pressed, the President would not say whether he would compel his officials to declare their assets, but said that “they know that they have to declare their assets.”

Meanwhile, a report from the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs on the confirmation hearing of Ambassador-designate George S. W. Patten, accredited to the United States of America, was received, never read in open plenary but was confirmed during yesterday’s executive session.

Amb. Patten, during his confirmation hearing on February 21, 2019, offered an apology to the Senate in their Chambers when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs for confirmation proceedings. He had been prematurely appointed and commissioned by President Weah outside the normal procedure of firstly appearing for confirmation hearing by the Senate.

During the confirmation hearing, Mr. Patten, a career diplomat and lawyer, was questioned whether he had fulfilled Article 54 of the Constitution before taking his assignment to Washington DC. “I am an emissary of the President and an envoy given an official letter to deliver, I serve Liberia and the President, but the realization was that I have to come back here and I complied; that’s why I am here.”

Patten in further questions asserted that his realization was based on the fact that the Senate has asked him to come back, “and that’s why I am here to have this discussion, this dialogue.”

He admitted being knowledgeable of the Constitution, but he emphasized that he is an emissary of the President “and when the head of state requires you to undertake an urgent assignment it challenged me to be there, but you could not possibly say no…”

He was positive of being confirmed because, for over 30 years, Ambassador Patten intimated that he had dedicated his life in serving his motherland in the foreign service since leaving school, to countries like the Gambia, Libya, Ethiopia and now the United States. “With the experiences that I have, I believe I can be very useful in Washington cementing that historical relationship between Liberia and the United States which we intend to strengthen further. “

8 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you Madam Vice President, for respectfully reminding members of the Honorable House of Senate to fulfill their constitutional mandate.
    Just keep focused, and we will get there.
    God bless.

  2. This is Counselor James Boayue, former Nimba County Attorney. These assets declarations should be made public. Again George Weah fails the Liberian people!!! Call me at 0888305743 or my law partner Counselo Saye Kollie Boayue at 886257214 to debate my point of view. How would the Liberian people know your assets?

  3. Don’t worry Madam Vice President Nimba County and Lofa County support you against the constant harassment from George Weah our homosexual and drug addict reverend.Call me at 0888305743 or my law partner Counselo Saye Kollie Boayue at 886257214

  4. I really don’t understand why it is a problem for government officials and lawmakers to disclose what their net worth is.

    A few weeks ago, some Liberian senators were shouting bloody murder in their chambers about Patten’s recess appointment. Although Rule 55 enables all elected presidents to do such appointments, Patten’s appointment became a hot potato. Now, the question is what came first? The chicken or the egg? To hit the bull’s eye, did “assets declaration” become a requirement before Patten’s recess appointment or the other way around?

    Of course, the issue of asset declaration came first! The recess appointment of Patten came second! Instead of the declaring their assets, some senators have employed the tactics of diversion. It’s about time that the senators of Liberia had fessed up. The ball is in the courts of the Liberian senate. It is mandatory for them to disclose their net worth.

  5. Counselor James boayue at 0888305743 & my law partner Counselo Saye Kollie Boayue at 886257214 would like to actively join other groups of liberians as we protest the disadvantaged we are now suffering under the Weah administration. I voted for him because I felt he was for us,former rebels who now don’t have jobs.luckily, I can plead law among the poor people without a current license (this is Liberia). For now, we took over my brother farm since none of the children are in Nimba. Some times we are forced to sell some of their land.
    Liberia must change, George weah is the wrong man for the presidency just like prince Johnson is a terrible Senator, a 5th grade graduate

  6. Senators and other government officials shouldn’t declare or make their asset declaration public due to privacy and the protections of their children and family…

  7. Most African countries are doing public audit. So if they do not declare their assets, find their houses, list their mansions as assets and their cars, and then do a public lifestyle audit. if they are living large beyond their means, they are crooks. Plain and simple.

  8. If only the lawmakers were doing the right thing, then they would have demonstrated no fear in declaring their assets. But as it appears now, their worst fears are derived from the fact that they have accumulated so much ill-gotten wealth to the point, that they are afraid that if they were thoroughly scrutinized, it would be discovered that it is almost impossible to reconcile those wealth with their their actual earnings.

    Moreover, the delay on the part of President Weah to re-enforce the constitutional code of conduct concerning this matter, has absolutely emboldened the defiant lawmakers including the other officials.

    However, can a “Pro-Poor Government” win without being compassionate, selfless, and mindful of the hardships of the poor? Let someone help us with an answer.

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