Lawmaker’s Comment Suggests Senate Confirmation Not Void of External Influence

MONROVIA, Montserrado- “Mr. Nominee, let me take this time to congratulate you for your preferment. You know many times we are coerced to swallow the bitter pills to accept some average and some not average.” This was the exact comment of Grand Kru’s Sen. Peter Coleman to former Sen. Blamo Nelson during his confirmation hearing as Liberia Ambassador-designate to Japan, before the Senate’s Committee on Foreign Relations, Monday, July 8.

The statement though not clearly defined in the context provided a clue on how senators are influenced or coerced by external forces to carry out confirmations of presidential appointees- not on the basis of merit, competence or qualification.

Senator Coleman made the comment amid huge comments from the public on the Senate Committee on Banking and Finance’s decision to reject three of President George Weah’s nominees for the Central Bank of Liberia Board of Governors.

The committee recommended to the general Senate body that the nominees’ confirmations be rejected on grounds that the three among other things lacked the knowledge to develop the necessary policies to mitigate the long-standing problem of internal control at the Central Bank.

The recommendations are yet to be acted on by the Senate’s Plenary, but many have been skeptical that the nominees’ confirmation would be rejected by the Senate Plenary.

Already, Grand Bassa’s Senator Jonathan Kaipay has filed a motion for reconsideration on the recommendation for the confirmation of the three nominees. Kaipay filed the motion on Tuesday, before the Senate Plenary.

The Senate Rule 34, section 1, 2 & 3 give senators the right to file a motion for reconsideration stating reasons why a decision must be reconsidered.

Before members of the Committee on Foreign Relations headed by Maryland’s Senator Dahn Morias, Nelson said, even though he has not served in any ambassadorial position, he has over 40 years of working experience in government and the private sector.

“I have also worked along with many foreign partners for the growth and prosperity of our Country, Liberia,” the former senator disclosed.

He was one of the actors behind the organization of the Accra Peace Accord, which paved the way for peace in Liberia. He also helped in the formation of the Good Governance Commission.

Members of the committee praised the nominee for his rich experience and promised to vote for his confirmation. Members of the committee also include Maryland’s Senator Gbleh-bo Brown and Rivercess’ Senator Dallas Gweh.

Featured photo by Zeze Ballah

 

Ida Reeves

Ida Reeves is a senior student at the University of Liberia studying Mass Communications and Sociology. She graduated from the Young Political Leadership School and has worked in the past for Farbric Radio, Freedom Radio, and Frontier newspaper.

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