Majority members of the House of Representatives seeking the recusal of indicted House Speaker Alex Tyler have announced the consecration of that august body’s chamber minutes after the embattled speaker finally agreed to recuse himself from further presiding over the House plenary to focus on his criminal indictment.
Tyler is facing a criminal indictment before the Criminal Court “A” at the Temple of Justice for his alleged involvement in the Sable Mining (a British Mining firm),bribery scandal in which several government officials both past and present including former Unity Party Chairman Cllr. Varney Sherman, now Grand Capemount County Senator were named by the environmental watchdog Global Witness.
The majority bloc took the decision to call in prayer warriors to exorcise the chamber of the denigration that may have been caused by the criminally indicted speaker, who chose to preside despite his indictment.
The move follows a recusal statement issued by Tyler, something that prompted the majority lawmakers to announce the bringing in of the prayer warriors in the chamber on Saturday. Meanwhile, announcing his recusal at a press conference earlier, Tyler said his current position is in no way a desire to hold on to power at the detriment of the state, instead; it is solely geared towards ensuring that Liberia does not conform to actions that are unconstitutional, illegal and undemocratic.
“I ought to submit myself to due process; and when our colleagues elected to violate the constitution by holding parallel session in the joint chambers, we subsequently proceeded to approach the Supreme Court. But to our utmost surprise, the Supreme Court was not inclined to take a definitive stand on this matter, thus leaving the situation as a free for all political warfare,” Tyler explains.
He pointed out that when citizens can no longer turn to the courts for redress, particularly the Supreme Court as the final arbiter of justice in the land, than lawlessness and unilateralism take center stage.
According to him, as he pursues the prime objective of his mission of service to the nation and people, he will do nothing to undermine the fundamental tenets of democracy. “Let history judge that Speaker Tyler was not the impediment to the progress of our nation and that those who sought to subvert our constitution, were the real state enemies who undermined the cohesion and stability of our nation and its organic laws. The decision we seek to make here today, should not be mistaken as sign of weakness, as it will be a matter of foolish pride, to sit idly and see our nation and the institutions of governance disintegrate and descend into chaos and anarchy,” Tyler said as his tune betrays his strength.
He noted that if his recusal is the ultimate sacrifice that will move the country forward and end the current quagmire, “I am herewith rescuing myself from presiding over the plenary of the House of Representatives so that the business of the Liberian people can be fully addressed,” he added.
He, however, argued that indictment is not a guilty and it is indeed unfortunate that some of his colleagues have chosen to effectively and glaringly exploit and politicize what is purely a legal matter.
He then expressed ardent hope that the ongoing trial can be speedily adjudicated; adding that none from the presidency to the ordinary man in the street can subvert the Liberian Constitution with impunity or subject the country to his/her personal whims and caprices.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor-Editing by Othello B. Garblah