As the Supreme Court of Liberia awaits majority members of Margibi County leadership to appear and give cause why one of their colleagues, Senator Oscar A. Cooper’s complaint against them should not be granted, the county’s district #2 Representative Ivar K. Jones argues they made no error.
Excluding Senator Oscar A. Cooper, Associate Justice Joseph N. Nagbe cited the Margibi leadership to a conference recently in his chamber at 4:00 PM to explain reason behind their action being protested by Sen. Cooper.
The leadership recently apportioned US$1 million belonging to Margibi from the China Union Social Development Fund in Montserrado County on June 13, 2019 to various projects.However, the decision, according to Senator Cooper, totally violates the budget law of Liberia and is against the best interest of the county.
He also frowns at those members of the leadership involved in waiving a huge portion of royalty to China Union, which had invested in Margibi County prior to their decision.On these grounds, Sen. Cooper took an exception to his colleagues’ action and ran to the Supreme Court, praying that body to intervene.
After the August 14 conference at the Supreme Court, the senator’s lawyer Counsellor Lavela Koboi Johnson, Sr. informed the media that they (Margibi Officials) were told to reverse their decision because they were in error by acting against the budget Law, a statement backed by Senator Cooper himself.
The authorities instead of returning to the county to reconsider their decision, were expected at the Supreme Court last Thursday, August 23rd to give reason why Cooper’s move against them should not be granted.
However, returning from the United States of America recently, Margibi County District#2 Representative Ivar K Jones, who was out of the country during the conference, maintains the caucus made no error.He argues they based their decision on Count Four of resolution derived from the Margibi County 2018 Council Sitting.
According to him, the budget law gives rise to the resolution as a legitimate instrument to be used.Rep. Jones continues that all decisions arrived at from his district regarding proposed projects relative to the Nov. 2018 sitting stand.He says anyone who stands in the way of development for the people of Margib now, and 2020, the people will stand in his way at the ballot box.
Explaining further, he notes that he and Representative Clarence G. Gahr are the only ones from Margibi who opposed the waiver of the money but will of the majority has to prevail, adding that about three other counties made similar decision.He warns no one should take the China Union money issue to gain undue political relevance at the detriment of majority members of the county leadership.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has placed an injunction on Margibi’s account at the GN Bank in Katata. During the recent conference with the Supreme Court, it was established that the total money in the bank has been reduced from US$750,000 to a little over US$ 400,000, while the money is still on contention.
The Chairman of the Margibi County Legislative Caucus Rep. Ben A Fofana, who is heavily blamed for the current disagreement, clarified that they were only sent to inform Margibians that central government waived the money to China Union contrary to claim that the leadership did.
He explained recently in the county that the total amount was US$ 1 million, but government credited US$250,000, making the money to reduce to US$750,000.Rep. Jones maintains the apportionment was done on the entire US$1 million, not US$750,000 because government is expected to restitute the amount credited.By Ramsey Singbe, Jr. Margibi