Special Awards In Pictures

-Rep. Browne Brands Boakai’s Endorsement
Grand Bassa County electoral district#4 representative and chairman of the House’s committee on rules, orders and administration, Jeh Byron Browne has branded the endorsement of Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai’s presidential bid by 31 members of the House of Representatives at the Rotunda of the National Legislature as an ‘infringement’ causing the country to ‘bleed’ constitutionally.

Browne, who is also a stalwart of the Liberty Party, said the issues of rights are effectively different from laws, but the issue of laws supersedes the issue of rights.
The Grand Bassa County lawmaker indicated that while it is true that individual or group of individuals may have political rights, it doesn’t mean that they should effectively effectuate those rights in the wrong direction.

“In this case, their rights are political based and this building being a political institution, it is being misapplied because today is a session day and the Rotunda of the Capitol Building is not intended for political rally,” he said.

Although session was settled before the commencement of the endorsement program, but Representative Browne revealed that as chair on rules, orders and administration, he and his committee members were not asked for the use of the facility.

“Because you are Vice President, you don’t breach the law. That’s another breach of the law. Every step of this building is being administered by the committee on rules, orders and administration. I have no communication from anyone that they want to use the Rotunda,” he alleged.

According to Browne, the action by those lawmakers is a slap in the face of the Liberian people. He lamented that any violation to any law whether organic or statutory law it is an injury to the state.

“Today Liberia is bleeding because one of our laws has been violated and so it is a bad precedent. We are under obligation to make sure that we have a clear, transparent level playing field for the conduct of the election,” he added.

On General Services Agency Role in the endorsement:
Despite the legalization of the National Code of Conduct ahead of the impending presidential and legislative elections set for October 10, 2017, Representative Browne observed Thursday that majority of the chairs used for the VP’s endorsement were supplied by General Service Agency (GSA), something he said is wrong.
“GSA is providing public address system, chairs at the Capitol Building; I wonder if the yanna boys decided to use Rotunda of the House of Representatives, will GSA give those chairs? I wonder if CDC, Liberty Party, NPP and other political parties decided to have a political rally whether the GSA will give those chairs. You can see that the other political parties’ rights have been infringed upon,” he further alleged.

According to Section 4.7 of the National Code of Conduct, ‘Care of State Property’ All Public Officials and Employees of Government shall protect all properties of the state against damage, theft, loss, destruction and abuse, and where applicable, administer resources in the most effective and efficient manner in compliance with the Public Financial Management Act and other financial regulations and the Public Procurement and Concessions Act, to secure the purposes for which resources have been allocated.

“He or she shall not use public resources to gain personal benefit or give undue advantage to his or her relatives, other individuals or group of individuals,” the Code of Conduct indicated.

Although the Grand Bassa County lawmaker who is member of the Liberty Party has raised the red flag, but added that he won’t go to court because the numerous endorsements of Vice President Boakai are all fiasco.

“This is complete jungle justice, kangaroo politics, this is a complete de facto stuff and I am not going to give credence to somebody crying wolf around. Our staffers were forced by those lawmakers to wear their T-shirts,” he said.

Representative Browne further alleged that the chiefs and elders of the country have been forced to support Boakai. He stressed that those behind these actions are misleading the Vice President.

By Reuben Sei Waylaun

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