MICAT’s Thursday Regular Press Briefing
Distinguished members of the Fourth Estate, welcome to this press briefing intended to inform and acquaint you with development coming out of government and provide clarity on issues of National Concern.
The Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism is soliciting support in disseminating information about the support Program for Translation of Mexican Literary Works into Foreign Languages. With the aim of archiving a worldwide promotion and diffusion of the Mexican national culture, this program calls on foreign publishers to apply for grants to translate and publish the literary works of Mexican authors in their national languages. The program is sponsored by the Government of Mexico through the Mexican National Council for Culture and Arts as represented by the Mexican National Fund for Culture and Arts.
ON A NEWSPAPER PUBLICATION CAPTIONED “DANGER LOOMS OVER ELLEN, FAMILY’S LIVES
The Government of Liberia (GOL) is concerned about the Friday publication of May 20, 2011 edition of the Nation Times Newspaper front page captioned “DANGER LOOMS OVER ELLEN, FAMILY’s LIVES”. According to the story, there are still quarrels within the Special Security Service (SSS), heightening insecurity amongst agents due the continuous leaking of sensitive information to outsiders to the detriment of the President. The story further states, Deputy Director for Operations, Frank Nyekan, who is now acting SSS Director is serving as spy in the President’s office. The Nation Time also indicated that Nyekan is still in the hallway of the Presidency allegedly leaking sensitive information from the desk of the President to some Foreign missions in the Country.
The Nation Time also accused National Security Advisor, Boima Fahnbulleh, Immegration Commissioner, Chris Massaquoi, Defense Minister Brownie Samukai and National Security Agency Director, Fumbah Sirleaf push out suspended SSS Director, Samuel Bispire from the office of the President as a means of accomplishing their selfish interest in the corridor of power. The Minister will speak to that effect.
The government of Liberia says while it supports the rights of individuals, institutions to subscribe to views and exercise free speech, it cautions against unprofessionalism. The government believes that at time like this, it is important for well-meaning professional like the Nation Time Newspaper to be more professional other than dallying into unethical reportage. Meanwhile, the authorities of the Ministry of Information invited the editor of the Nation Time Newspaper to authenticate his story but failed to attend. Therefore, the government calls on the Management of the Nation Time Newspaper to desist and be more professional. Moreover, President Sirleaf’s performance over the last five years has fundamentally transformed the nation as well as the nation’s image abroad.
ON THE PRESIDENT’S TRIP TO THE US
The President of Liberia, H.E. Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf arrived in the United States of America Sunday, May 22, 2011 to participate in ceremonies marking the 360th commencement convocation of Harvard University. President Sirleaf who will serve as Guest Speaker for this year’s commencement to be held today Thursday, May 26, 2011, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The President since her arrival held series of meetings in Washington with Liberians. The President’s delegation to the US includes Hon. Robert Sirleaf, Senior Advisor to the President, Hon. Amara Konneh, and Norris Tweah amongst others.
ON THE PRESIDENT’S COUNTY TOUR
The President of Liberia H.E. Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will travel to Sinoe and River Cess Counties as part of her nationwide County tours next June 2011.
Calendar of Events for Sinoe and River Cess Counties Tours.
· June 1st-3rd, 2011--------Sinoe County
· June 2, 2011 Cabinet Retreat in Greenville City.
· June 4th -5th, 2011 -------River Cess County.
These County tours are intended to inspect ongoing projects, dedicate finished projects, and assess the living condition of the people and hold town hall meetings as well as addressing the plight of citizens and residents of Liberia.
These tours have taking the President to several Counties and Communities including Logan Town, WestPoint, Clara Town, G/ville, Paynesville, New kru Town, Gbapolu, Grand Cape Mount, Bassa, Nimba , Grand Gedeh, Grand Kru, Maryland, River Gee, Bong, and Lofa Counties.
ON REFERENDUM 2011
The National Legislature passed a joint Resolution in August 2010 proposing a constitutional Referendum to amend certain provisions of the Liberian constitution including Articles 52(C), 72(b), and 83(a) &(b)
Referendum is the process by which citizens vote directly to either accept or reject a public policy, a propose law or constitutional amendment. In the Liberian context, the Legal framework provides for the holding of a referendum only for the purpose of effecting an amendment to provisions of the constitution. Bobby Livingstone, Public Relation Officer will provide information on Referendum 2011.
Article 52c says
“Resident in the Republic ten years prior to his election provided that the President and Vice President shall not come from the same County”.
To amend Article 52(c) which proposed that, the residency requirement for President be reduced from (10) years to five years prior to an election.
“The Chief Justice and Associate Justices of the Supreme Court and judges of the subordinate court of record shall be retired at the age of seventy; provided, however that a justice or judge who has attained that age may continue in office for as long may be necessary to enable him to render judgment or perform any other judicial duty in regard to proceedings by him before he attained that age”.
To amend Article 72(b) proposed that, the Chief Justice, Associate justices of the Supreme Court and judges of the subordinate Courts shall serve for life, except that they shall be retired at age seventy-five.
Article 83a says,
“Voting for the President, Vice President, Members of the Senate and Members of the House of Representatives shall be conducted throughout the Republic on the second Tuesday in October of each year.”
To amend Article 83(a) which proposed that the current constitutional election date be changed; and a new constitutional date for President, Vice President, members of the Senate and House of Representatives; and for chiefs, City Mayors and City Council is set.
“All elections of public officers shall be determined by an absolute majority of the votes cast .If no candidate obtains an absolute majority in the first ballot, a second ballot shall conducted on the second Tuesday following. The two candidates who received the greatest numbers of votes on the first ballot shall be designated to participate in the runoff election”.
To amend Article 83(b) which proposed that election for all public officers, except for the President and Vice President, shall be by simple majority of valid votes cast in any election in Liberia.
Questions and Answers Period
Hon. Cletus A. Sieh was present
Jerolinmek M. Piah
Deputy Minister for Public Affairs
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
Ably assisted by
Hon. Isaac W. Jackson, Jr.
Assistant Minister for Information Services
Conducted by: Abel Plackie
Director for Public Affairs
Ramses Kumbuyah_________________LACE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Ambassador Carlton A. Karpeh
Former Minister of Information, Culture and Tourismblog comments powered by Disqus