By: Emmanuel wise Jopoh
The House of Representatives has voted to investigate a complaint from Grand Bassa County District #5 Representative Thomas Goshua, about an alleged violation by ArcelorMittal Liberia (AML) of its Mineral Development Agreement (MDA) for constructing its first washing plant in Nimba County instead of Grand Bassa County.
The House’s Plenary on Thursday, 1st June 2023 during its 6th day sitting of the 2nd quarter unanimously agreed that the Committee on Mines, Energy and Concessions probe AML alleged violation and report within one week.
Plenary voted that the Management of ArcelorMittal, the Ministry of Mines & Energy, and the National Bureau of Concessions be subjected to investigation.
The motion was made by Margibi County District #2 Representative with an amendment from Bong County District #2 Representative James Kolleh.
Rep. Goshua’s complaint reads: “… the Management of the said institution has made a unanimous decision to shortchange the MDA by building the Concentrator in Nimba County without seeking any form of approval from this Legislature, least to mention the courtesy of informing the Grand Bassa Legislative Caucus of how such decision was derived.”
The Bassa lawmaker continues: “In view of the forgoing, I humbly implore the conscience of this Plenary to invite the Management of ArcelorMittal, the Ministry of Mines & Energy, and the National Bureau of Concessions to explain how this decision was derived in gross breach of the aforementioned Mineral Development Agreement.”
Aggrieved citizens of Grand Bassa County, under the banner Bassa Rescue Movement a week ago, staged a series of protests at ArcelorMittal concession area, burning tyers and erecting roadblocks on the rail, as they demanded an explanation from AML Management for transferring the washing plant to Nimba, instead of Grand Bassa, as stated in the Mineral Development Agreement (MDA) under its Social Corporate Responsibility. Editing by Jonathan Browne