Public expectation has been high here that election for the Senate President Pro-tempore would have been today, Tuesday, January 13, 2015, but reports reaching The NewDawn say the election is postponed to Thursday, January 15 or probably next week Tuesday.
Reason for the delay is yet unknown, but there are indications from newly elected and incumbent senators that the prohibition at the Supreme Court involving three of their colleagues should be resolved before they go for election.
Grand Cape Mount County Senator-elect, Cllr. Varney Sherman; Margibi County Senator-elect, Rev. Jim Tornolah; and Bomi County Senator-elect, Morris Saytumah, are facing legal challenges before Justice in Chambers, Cllr. Philip A. Z. Banks about electoral fraud filed by their respective opponents in the December 20th Special Senatorial Election.
The three individuals did not form part of the presentation of election certificates and credentials ceremony held at the Capitol Building Monday, January 12, as requires by the rules of the Liberian Senate.
Already, there are three senators seeking support of their colleagues for the senate’s lucrative post; namely, Armah Jallah of Gbarpolu, Oscar Cooper of Margibi and Joseph Nagbe of Sinoe.
It is constitutionally requires that the President of the Senate and Vice President of Liberia, Hon. Joseph Nyumah Boakai, will preside for the next two session days or presiding officer, H. Dan Morais of Maryland County, who chairs the Foreign Relations Committee.
As the election in the “House of Elders” is delayed, others senators, who are not in the race, have begun lobbying to chair key statutory committees.
Bong County Senator Jewel Howard Taylor and Grand Gedeh County Senator G. Alphonso Gaye, are expected to battle each other at the poll for the Ways, Means and Finance Committee, while Montserrado County Senator Geraldine Doe Sherif is reportedly favored for the committee on Rules, Orders and Administration. It is somehow concluded that new comer Senator George Weah of Montserrado County is being tipped to chair the committee on Youths and Sports and to become one of Liberia’s representatives to the ECOWAS Parliament in Abuja, Nigeria. Weah is tipped for the ECOWAS post because he speaks both French and English.
Cllr. Varney Sherman will be vowing for the Chairman on Judiciary, if Sen. Nagbe succeeded in his bid to become the next Pro-tempore.
Meanwhile, speaking at the opening of the legislature yesterday, Vice President Joseph Boakai said, “We entered the 3rd Session with 65 legislations in committee rooms while today, we turn the door knob open on this 4th session with 72.”
Mr. Boakai added that the enormity of the challenges the senate has in the pending session is even more so manifested in the critical nature of some of the legislations that await disposition.
Also speaking, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, J. Alex Tyler, urged his elected colleagues in the Liberian Senate to fulfill their promises to the electorate during the campaign period. He reminded that those promises were not made under duress, urging that it is more upright to their sprit man to keep promises made to fellow Liberians.