“Dialogue With COP”

-Rep. Domah Urges President Weah

Nimba County electoral District Seven Representative Roger Domah is urging President George Manneh Weah to dialogue with members of the Council of Patriots (COP) ahead of their planned nationwide protest on December 30, 2019 across the country.

Organizers of the planned protest said they want President Weah to tell them why the country is facing such enormous hardship under his administration and why their petition submitted to the government in June 2019 has not been addressed. The intent of the group is to mobilize over 100,000 Liberians on Capitol Hill, the seat of the Liberian Government for a ‘peaceful assembly’.

However, the COP has again set December 30, 2019 as the date for another protest despite warnings from government and other Liberians.

But addressing legislative reporters on wide range of national issues Thursday December 5, 2019 at his Capitol Building Office, Nimba County electoral district seven Representative Roger Domah said looking at the economic crisis and others, there is a serious need for dialogue with the organizers of the planned December 30, 2019 protest.

Representative Domah who is also a member of the House of Representatives’ committee on Claims and Petition further said the Liberian leader needs to be courageous enough in dialoguing with officials of the COP.

He also wants members and officials of the COP to see reasons in listening if the President calls for a dialogue with them for the sake of Liberians.

“The situation is very volatile if you allow that kinds of things to happen because the situation might not be good. So, we are appealing and calling on the leadership of the COP to see reasons if the government reaches out to them for them to sit and find a common ground,” he said.

The Nimba County district seven lawmaker and Secretary General of the Unity Party Legislative Caucus admitted that some of the issues raised by the COP are genuine concerns and as such, the government needs to listen to them and not listen to so many spokespersons that are speaking on behalf of the government.

“So many spokespersons speaking and they are not helping. They should give the president the chance to think about this situation and ensure that it is brought under control peacefully,” he added.

The Unity Party stalwart and clergyman of the United Methodist Church wants the religious leaders in the country to get involved in the process of dialoguing.

“Even the Legislature has a part to play and we should avoid this partisan posture because these are people who elected us and if they are faced with situation, we must muster the courage to work around the situation so that it can be resolved, but if we all sit and take political lines, I think we are not playing leadership role. The religious community, civil society organizations and legislature, I think we all should play our role to ensure that the protest is halted and the government too should know that the people are suffering and should look into the COP’s concerns,” he further added.

On Printing New Money:

At the same time, Representative Domah said the economic issue in the country is becoming chaotic. According to him, if the government feels the solution to the problems is to print new money, there should be no obstacles.

He revealed that a resolution signed at the House of Representatives calls for the restructuring and auditing of the Central Bank of Liberia, profiles of companies that will bid for the printing of the money, specimens of money for review among others.

According to him, the resolution was signed by two-third members of the House of Representatives, but it has not been placed on the agenda of the House for deliberations before sending it to the Liberian Senate.

He said as per their decision, the money is not additional money, but new set of money replacing the legal banknotes all together and the decision came from the recommendations of the National Economic Dialogue.

“The only concern I have is that those of us in the Legislature should ensure that the enabling environment is provided so that when the money is printed, we cannot experience the same things that we experienced when the L$16billion was printed. I saw the resolution that they drafted, I think the conditions drafted in the resolutions are good and if the government is going to print this money in good fate, they must ensure that these conditions are met,” he said.

The Nimba County lawmaker said they aren’t going to give any blanket statement to the executive and later get conflict between the legislature and the executive because of the way they will proceed. He said the conditions set in the resolution must be respected.

Representative Domah added “the president is governing Liberia and not governing a political party.”

He also wants members of the National Legislature elected by the Liberian people to represent them by ensuring transparency, which will guarantee the spirit of patriotism and nationalism by finding solutions to problems facing the Liberian people.

“I think it is about time that the legislature takes the lead in promoting transparency in our governance system and to do everything in hiding, those of us who have oversight responsibility if we are not transparent, we are creating breeding ground for corruption in our governance system,” he said.

He added “CSOs and others should closely monitor our activities as legislature in order to put our feet on the fire to work in the interest of the Liberian people. The leadership now has to open up to the Liberian people and I think we are giving rooms to bad governance in the country.”

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