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Liberia news

Lawmakers return to capitol

Members of the House of Representatives and the Liberian Senate are expected to resume their respective duties today, Monday, January 11following annual break.

The lower House is however expected to officially induct newly elected Julia Wiah, who won the Lofa County electoral district #2 by-election as an Independent candidate. Upon sitting, both chambers are really expected to pass several bills submitted by the Executive, including those left on their respective dockets that the general public expects to be legislated.

The two Houses ended legislative session on October 15 last year and went for constituency break, previously known as agriculture break. The formal closure of the 4th Session of the Senate in 2015 marked its 29th sitting, while the House was at its 13th sitting of its extraordinary session.

Some of the bills include making corruption charges non- billable, a bill seeking for amendment in the Liberia National Police and the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization acts, passage of oil blocks 3, 4, and 5 to be sold to foreign investors.

In its last sitting, the House of Representatives disclosed that about 38 bills are with committees, while 33 were passed into law. Conventionally, the first branch of government embarks on its annual break on August 30, but session was extended by six weeks upon request from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on August 27 in accordance with Article 32b of the 1986 Constitution.

Many of the lawmakers, especially from the House of Representatives may not be very active at the Capitol Building this year as they prepare for re-election. In the Senate, Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai, who is also President of the Liberian Senate is vying for the Presidency, while Senate President Pro-Tempore Armah Jallah and House Speaker J. Alex Tyler are nurturing similar dream for 2017.

By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor
About 95 per cent of the House of Representatives would return to their respective electoral districts and counties to start early engagement with electorates ahead of next year’s Presidential and Representative elections.

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Senators George Mannah Weah of Montserrado County and Prince Johnson of Nimba County also have their eyes fixed on the Presidency, but Senator Johnson is likely to settled down as possible running mate to a potential standard bearer.

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