Former House Speaker J. Alex Tyler and several other lawmakers risk losing their salaries and benefits for not attending regular legislative sessions here.
Based on Bong County District #5 Rep. Edward Karfiah’s complaint that some representatives were not attending sessions, Montserrado County Rep. Edwin Melvin Snowe suggested that the House was governed by rules, and that they could not allow their colleagues to stay away from session without any excuse for months and yet receive salaries and gasoline.
Speaking in session Thursday, 9 March, Bong County District # Rep. Edward Karfiah complained that some colleagues at the Lower House, who have not written excuses, were not going to work most of the times
when the House goes for Session.
Rep. Karfiah said it was becoming alarming at the House of Representatives because most of the time it was difficult to get a quorum, the number of lawmakers that must be present to make the legislative proceedings valid.
He recommended that there was a need to communicate with the absentee lawmakers to tell them that they needed to come to work because they have their work to do on behalf of the Liberian people.
He was buttressed by Rep. Edwin M. Snowe of Montserrado County, who suggested that the issue of lawmakers not coming to work was a very serious matter, warning that the House was governed by rules.
Rep. Snowe noted that they cannot allow their colleagues to stay away from session without any excuse for months and yet allow them to receive salaries and gasoline. He argued that some of the absentee lawmakers were present at every political forum while abandoning legislative sessions.
Rep. Snowe made specific mention of former Speaker Alex Tyler, claiming that since Mr. Tyler’s removal as speaker, he has only gone to session once. Rep. Snowe alleges that Mr. Tyler has not returned to session, thus leaving the people of Bomi County District #1 who elected Mr. Tyler to have no representation in session.
Former Speaker Tyler was last seen in session on 31 November 2016, a day he told journalists that leadership of the House had not given him office space in response to journalists’ inquiry as to why he was not going to work.
By Bridgett Milton–Editing by Winston W. Parley