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Deputy Speaker Koffa, Reps Gray, Wesso get ‘Diaspora Person of the year 2021’ Award

Twenty twenty-one Diaspora Person of the Year award has been won by three lawmakers. Deputy House Speaker J. Fonati Koffa of Grand Kru County was joined, in getting this prestigious award, by Representatives Acarous Moses Gray of Montserrado County, District #8 and Cllr. A. Kanie Wesso of Gbarpolu County, District #2.

In separate letters to the three distinguished lawmakers, The All-Liberian Conference on Dual Citizenship (ALCOD) Eminent Chairman Emmanuel S. Wettee, states, “Liberians in the Diaspora including Africa, Europe, Australia, and the Americas represented by The All-Liberian Conference on Dual Citizenship (ALCOD) overwhelmingly voted to recognize you three for your extraordinary efforts that culminated into the passage of the Dual Citizen Bill in the House of Representatives on November 11, 2021.”

“The Diaspora Person of the Year Award is the premier award from the Liberian Diaspora that is given to individual(s) or institution who have advocated for Dual Citizenship for natural born Liberians and those born of Liberian parentage, in the year under review,” Chairman Wettee further stated.

Since 2012, only one person had been selected each year. However, this year, according to Chairman Wettee, the three men were selected as a direct result of their efforts on the 2021 Dual Citizenship Bill now pending before the Liberian Senate for conference. “The responses we received were so profoundly compelling about your individual work. Diaspora Liberians shall forever remain grateful to the three of you,” Eminent Wettee told each of the lawmakers.

Past recipients of the award have included former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former Vice President, Ambassador Joseph Nyumah Boakai, former Liberian Ambassador to the United States and Mexico, Mr. Jeremiah C. Sulunteh, Senator Varney Sherman, Cllr. Archibald F. Bernard, Cllr. Seward Cooper, among others.

Each of the recipients is presented with a beautifully carved-wooden plaque with inscriptions of the role the awardee played in the year 2021 on behalf of Liberians in the diaspora advocating for Dual Citizenship.

The Dual Citizenship Bill Before the Senate

Last November 2021, ALCOD Chairman Wettee appealed to the Senate to conference with the House of Representatives on the passage of the Dual Citizenship Bill, which the House had passed and sent to them for concurrence.

The bill, which was passed by the House, was intended to amend and or repeal some parts of the Aliens and Nationality Law of Liberia.

Specially, the bill sought to repeal Part III, Chapter 20, Section 20.1; Chapter 21, Sections 21.30, 21.31, 21.51 & 21.52 and Chapter 22, Sections 22.1, 22.1 & 22.4 of the Aliens and Nationality Law of the Liberian Code of Law Revised, Vol. II.

The bill was championed by Montserrado County Electoral District #8 Representative Acarous Moses Gray and was co-sponsored by 30 of his colleagues, including Deputy House Speaker Jonathan Fonati Koffa. As Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Cllr. A. Kanie Wesso, was able to get the needed votes for his committee to recommend to the House’s Plenary to pass the bill.

The passage of the bill on November 11, 2021, in the House, was the first time ever, since pre or post-2012 for either chamber of the National Legislature to ever pass a bill on Dual Citizenship.


The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).
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