Battle For Speakership Today!!
-Several Names Out
-But Chambers Sails On Eagle’s Wings
By Charles P. Dennis
It is still unclear who will ultimately emerge victorious in the struggle for House Speakership today amongst members of the Liberian 54th Legislature, particularly amongst names that are on the list of contenders.
The stage is set today for members of the House of Representatives to elect their new leaders before the historic inauguration of President-elect, George MannehWeah and Vice President-elect, Jewel Howard Taylor on the 22nd of January. The Senate is also electing its officers today, including a new President Pro-Tempore but the Lower House is focused in this edition. In the Lower House, several prominent names, including Maryland County Representative, Bhofal Chambers of the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC); veteran local and international Lawyer, Cllr. Jonathan Fonati Koffa of the Liberty Party; Hon. Johnson Gwigoloe of the Victory for Change Party (VCP); Prince Moryee of the Unity Party (UP) and incumbent Deputy Speaker, Grand Bassa County Representative, Hans Barchue amongst others are topping the list of those who are contesting to replace outgoing House Speaker, J. Emmanuel Nuquay.
But the battle line is reportedly drawn between old/ retained and new lawmakers who were recently elected during the October 10, 2017 presidential and legislative elections.
While the old/ retained lawmakers are trying to push the argument of inexperience as a basis to ignore or deny the newcomers of the Speaker position, the new lawmakers are also pushing a counter-argument that members of the 53rd Legislature performed dismally during the last 6 years for which most of them were voted out by the electorate, noting that electing a Speaker from among them would mean the betrayal of the people’s interest and trust.
However, by the end of the day, Liberians would be able to know who the new House Speaker would be.
But there are reports that Maryland District 2 Representative, Chambers of the CDC is highly preferred amongst his colleagues; Dr. Chambers has already been endorsed by the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), a tripartite coalition and some of the new lawmakers.
Dr. Chambers, who has been a very strong critic of the Unity Party led administration, has over the years gained the respect and admiration of his people back home as well as his colleagues for what some them called his uncompromising stance against bad laws and concession agreements.
Dr. Chambers, according to reports from the South-east was very instrumental for the victory of the CDC in the region the elections.
Perhaps as a testimony of his popularity in the south-eastern region, Dr. Chambers won a hat trick legislative term following his landslide victory in the 2017; his recent victory according to some residents is the first of its kind in the history of the district and the county in general.
When quizzed recently by reporters concerning the secret behind his success in the county, the tough-talking CDC strongman revealed that his unbending advocacy for the rights of his people has drawn the people closer to him and has created a concrete bond between them.
According to Dr. Chambers, he has always spoken and acted in the interest of his people, especially when it comes to the immediate and long term benefit for the use of their lands for concession purposes.
“I am the voice of the voiceless in the New Jerusalem (as the PleeboSuloken District is affectionately called),” Dr. Chambers asserted.
Some political commentators believe that under the speakership of Dr. Chambers, the George MannehWeah’s regime would sail smoothly in the implementation of governmental policies and legislative agenda without any significant opposition from either the Lower House or the Upper House.
According to the Liberian Constitution, the elections of the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Senate Pro Temporal are held before the swearing in of the president- elect in the invent where both positions are vacant.