-Justice Minister-Designate predicts
Liberia’s Justice Minister-designate has alarmed that the electoral process scheduled for 2017 maybe chaotic if serious review of laws was not done before the conduct of the elections. Already, there are 23 registered political parties that will be contesting the nation’s presidency come 2017.
Cllr. Fredrick Cherue, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate’s Committee on the Judiciary on Monday, said there are laws on the books that needed complete review or else the electoral process could be delayed due to cases that may arise as a result of election results.
Adding his voice to the statement of the Cllr. Cherue, Grand Cape Mount Senator Varney Sherman said during the 2014 Special Senatorial elections, many Senators spent longer time outside of the chambers because of cases filed by defeated candidates.
According to him, the statutory powers of the National Elections Commission which according to the constitution should resolve and handle all elections-related cases were taken over by the Supreme Court – something that should have presided over by elections commission.he situation denied the elected Senators and their counties the opportunities at the time to be heard -something he said, may create serious embarrassment for the 2017 elections if these matters are not amicably resolved with the Supreme Bench of the Supreme Court.
Sen. Sherman described as unfortunate and disheartened for the Supreme Court to have taken over the powers belonging to another institution of government. Justice Minister-designate Cherue also promised that his administration at the Justice Ministry, if confirmed, would conduct more broad-based consultations before national decisions are taken.
He also promised to provide all allocations to all agencies of the national security apparatus under the ministry, including their just and budgetary benefits as allocated in the national budget. He added that if the government, through his ministry, provides the needed social and economic benefits to all security officers, national security will be guaranteed at fewer risks.
A former Senator of River Gee in the 52nd Legislature, Cllr. Cherue intimated that during his stay at the Justice Ministry, he would ensure that security officers are well taken care of accordingly. Commenting on the issue of holding discussions before taking actions, Cllr. Cherue said, no man is an island, suggesting that he will constructively and properly engage relevant stakeholders in key areas for proper coordination of the ministry’s activities.
“Even the very anatomy of the human body is a manifestation of the fact that it is extremely important to consult before reaching an informed and sound decision. In the Liberian Senate and as a former Chairman on National Security and Intelligence, I had broad consultations and deliberations before voting on important pieces of legislations,” he emphasized.
From the chambers’ floor, it is very certain that the Minister of justice-designate will have no problem with his confirmation as a the former Senator. By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor