The attention of the Daily Observer is drawn to concerns raised by Margibi County Senator Oscar Cooper which were reported in the April 5, 2019 edition of this newspaper. Senator Cooper, amongst other things, called for the prosecution of Nimba County Senator Prince Y. Johnson for what he claims is the violation of the Constitution.
According to the story, Senator Cooper said he was still “troubled by the realization that even though they were seven Senators, who signed a resolution and later joined by Senators PYJ and Thomas Grupee of Nimba County to deny the “anti-Justice Ja’neh group the decisive vote to impeach him; a majority vote was accumulated to give Ja’neh his marching orders.”
He argued that Senators who received credible information about a purported plot being concocted at the time to unseat Justice Ja’neh, but failed to testify during his impeachment trial, should be prosecuted relative to their action. That Senator Cooper appeared very incensed by the development was evident in his tone of voice and the content of his remarks.
Although not explicit, the Senator’s remarks strongly suggested that those Senators who voted to have Ja’neh removed must have received bribes to do so. According to sources (unnamed) on Capitol Hill, each compliant Senator received US$50,000 to vote against Ja’neh. Those who did, according to Senator Cooper, are enemies of the Constitution.
What this newspaper finds very troubling is the unsettling reality that the country’s institutions of national governance have been deeply imperiled by the actions of vile and corrupt individuals, such as the nation is now bearing witness to. It is as if integrity has become a nonsense word and honesty has since fled to the dogs.
And what is most disgusting of all is the fact that, all of such wheeling and dealing is being done in broad daylight, without the slightest remorse of conscience or fear of retribution, even in the face of crippling economic conditions that have the nation hovering virtually at the brink of disaster and economic collapse.
So what we do have here is: a compromised and corrupt Judiciary ever obeisant to presidential diktat; an all-powerful and corrupt Executive; and a hopelessly corrupt Legislature that never ceases to pay obeisance to an equally corrupt Executive.
Such was what the nation bore witness to during the past administration and has continued into this administration without let and now, perhaps, with even greater intensity.
In all this, impunity continues to stalk the land as can be seen in the increasing wave of public lawlessness and lawless behavior, even amongst state security forces, especially the Liberia National Police (LNP).
Religious institutions and leaders who should serve as the conscience of society also appear to have been compromised, given their silence on critical issues affecting the country, preferring instead to idolize and ingratiate themselves into the good graces of corrupt national leaders, all for pecuniary gain.
Worse still are the Baghdad Bobs or, if you may, lapdogs greedily gobbling up their master’s vomitus and reading sinister intent in any and every utterance against the rampant corruption and wayward behavior of public service officials. Once again, their motive for doing this is all for pecuniary gain.
Senator Cooper’s call for a recount of the impeachment vote, which is the right thing to do, may be rebuffed by his colleagues who voted to have Ja’neh impeached, given the “kafu” they have ingested. In this regard, Maryland County Senator J. Gbleh-bo Brown’s mea culpa and recantations can be considered instructive.
In similar light, too, can the ramblings of Nimba County Senator Prince Johnson be considered. Public perspectives on Senator Johnson’s vacillations and utterances strongly suggest that he has been dishonest in his dealings with Ja’neh in a manner and form reminiscent of his dealings with President Doe that ended in the horrible torture and execution of that President.
As for Senator Brown, all along the public had been under the apparently false impression that he had indeed voted against the impeachment of Ja’neh, since he had earlier appended his signature to the list of senators opposed to the impeachment of Justice Ja’neh.
But in a sudden volte-face, Senator Brown has revealed that, contrary to impressions that he voted in Ja’neh’s favor, he actually voted for his impeachment. Brown placed blame squarely on his colleagues for driving him into taking such a position.
But he recanted, arguing that he (Brown) was angry with his colleagues for publicly revealing the list of names of those who voted against Ja’neh’s impeachment because, according to him, the revelation served to demean those Senators who voted for Ja’neh’s impeachment.
But the Senator has drawn scathing criticism and lashes from the public for allegedly receiving bribes. If, in the opinion of the Daily Observer, this is true then such scathing criticism is indeed most befitting. That a respected Senator Brown would condescend to satiating base pecuniary appetites is disgusting, abhorrent and totally unexpected of one held in such high esteem.
The Senator’s argument that should a vote recount be done, he will vote to have the previous result annulled, is questionable and at best, laughable. As the old saying goes: “You can never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Senator Brown had a first chance but goofed and now he wants a second chance, which he may never ever be able to muster.
The nation is indeed imperiled, and its survival threatened!