“The Legislature Is No Longer Branded A Brown-Envelope Body” – Speaker Chambers Asserts
House Speaker, Bhofal Chambers has pay homage to members of the House of Representatives for successfully completing the first session of the body and working tirelessly to rebrand the institution.
Addressing a news conference minutes after the official closing ceremony of the House of Representatives, Speaker Chambers said, nowadays the House of Representatives is no longer consider a place where lawmakers received brown-envelop to pass or ratified agreements, bills and resolutions which are not in the interest of the country.
Generally in Liberia, Brown –Envelope is understood as a bribe given in cash or kind to members of the Legislature to ‘covertly’ fast-strike a particular bill, concession agreement, or resolution that is mostly not in the interest of the Liberian populace.
“We appreciate the press (Legislative Reporters or LEGISPOOL) for being with us doing this first session. We believed, LEGISPOOL is an auxiliary unit for the exercising phase of democracy, we say thank you very much…” Speaker Chambers intoned.
“I want to appreciate my esteem colleagues for being very much instrumental in doing these exercises, they have been very patriotic and selfless in their cooperation with the executive. Together we have made the House a place that is no longer branded a brown-envelop body” he added.
When asked as to how did he (Speaker Chambers) managed to resolved the recent fracas between him and some members of the House of Representatives who were fronting for his removal as Speaker of the body, the Maryland lawmaker described the situation as only a “misunderstanding” that erupted between him and his colleagues but appreciate them for resolving the matter amicably.
“It is not everything that went on doing our first session was pleasant, some were distasteful. Those things that were distasteful are all part of life. Jesus Christ came on Earth and for some time he was not celebrated. We don’t want celebrity status, what we want is what we can do together to ensure that Liberia is upgraded to what it was.” Speaker Chambers maintained.
According to Speaker Chambers, the House of Representatives during its first session pass into law 15 legislation.
He said 38 bills are still in Committee room with 10 petitions also still awaiting legislative enactment.
Meanwhile, Speaker Chambers has named a 15-men skeleton team to supervise the activities of the House of Representatives until the body returns in January of 2019.
Members of the 15-men team include Representative Lawrance Morris (Montserrado County), Representative Emerson Kamara (Grand Cape Mount County), Representative Haja Fata Siryon (Bomi County), Representative P. Mark Jurry (Maryland County), Representative Joseph Kolleh (Bong County), Representative Joseph Somwarbi (Nimba County).
Others are Representative Judy F. Wiah (Lofa County), Representative Nathaniel Bahway (Grand Kru County), Representative Matthew Zarzar (Sinoe County), Representative Ivar Jones (Margibi County), Representative Joseph Matthews (Gbarpolu County) and Representative Mary Karwah (Grand Bassa County).