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pg 7&8

VOICES

pg 9

LIBERTY FROWNS ON UP-LED GOVERNMENTS FAILURE TO ARTICULATE BOLD VISION FOR RECONCILIATION

TIME FOR HONESTY

FrontPage
www.frontpageafricaonline.com
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 4, 2014

LIBERIANS DISENCHANTED WITH LTA OVER HUGE RENTAL SPENDING

CLEVERLY BANKRUPTING LIBERIA

CENTRAL BANK OF LIBERIA


MARKET BUYING AND SELLING RATES LIBERIAN DOLLARS PER US DOLLAR

BUYING MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2014 MONDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 2014 L$80.00/US$1 L$80.00/US$1 L$80.00/US$1

SELLING L$81.00/US$1 L$81.00/US$1 L$81.00/US$1

These are indicative rates based on results of daily surveys of the foreign exchange market in Monrovia and its environs. The rates are collected from the Forex Bureaux and the commercials banks. The rates are not set by the Central Bank of Liberia.
Source: Research, Policy and Planning Department, Central Bank Liberia, Monrovia, Liberia

VOL 8 NO.527

PRICE L$40

LTA BOSS ISSUES PARTIAL RESPONSE TO $US 1.1 MILLION WASTE CONTROVERSY

The chair of the Liberia Telecommunications Authority(LTA) Angelique Weeks finally responded to a FrontPageAfrica inquiry regarding her decision to enter into a $US1 million lease agreement with a Chinese Company, Qinjian International for a building the LTA intends to use as an office space. What the chair has not been able to answer are the following: Why didnt LTA use such enormous amount to build a building of their own? Is spending one million plus dollars on a lease property a good investment for the LTA and value for money for Liberia and its international partners? Did the LTA seek approval from the Public Procurement Concessions Commission before advancing on the lease property? Documents in our possession prove otherwise A SPECIAL REPORT BY MAE AZANGO

THE WHOLE TRUTH?


pg. 6&7

See PG 2&3

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014


by the LNP officers to make that report. According to him, he had a double mind while compiling the report. He told the court that he knew Angel died of Asphyxia secondary to strangulation. A team of American pathologists were also invited from Nebraska Institute of Forensic Sciences in the United States of America (USA) by the defendants in 2008 to conduct autopsy on the remains of Angel Togba. An American team, after their autopsy, concluded that Angel died of suicide. Dr. Thomas L. Bennett, a member of the team who testified to his findings, told the court that Angel died by non-total suspension. According to him, one could commit suicide even by lying on the floor. Dr. Bennett said for strangulation to be determined, there should be a breakage in the hyoid bone which is located in the neck of every human being. He further stated that the hyoid bone does not break in the case of suicide. According to Dr. Bennett, none of the previous pathologists made mention of the hyoid bone in their reports but concluded that Angel died of asphyxia secondary to strangulation. He disclosed that his team located the hyoid bone and took a microscopic look at it and realized that it was not broken which indicated that Angel was not strangulated. As the pair linger in jail, strains between the two family is getting deeper, Oscar dismissed the allegations from Angels mother, Sue Togba, who is the niece of his wife, Mr. Paykue, that they are not on speaking terms. How can Madea say such, when I have not seen her ever since the incident due to my illness. Continued Oscar: What about the time when several of her Uncles went to see and sympathize with her? Did she receive and forgive them? But instead, she had it all over that the people went to beg her? Do you believe that we dont want to take responsibly of the childs death when she was living with us at the time she died? She is making up stories. Describing his third child out of five children, Oscar says Madea was the quite type and had many friends because she loved friends. He said Madea and the late Angels mother Sue were closed that everything, she had, she would put Sues share aside. Oscar explains that on that Friday, when the incident happened, it was about seven p.m. and electricity was off and they all were all sitting outside waiting for the lights to come back on. And when it was time for the children to take bath, small Hans saw Angel hanging in the bathroom and shouted for help. Hans ran and cut the rope to get her down and took her to the hospital. And it was when little Angie said Angel always said she could kill herself so the little girl told us the Angel asked that she little Angie hang the rope around her neck, but she did not do it and took it for joke because she said Angel always said it whenever they played together.

Mae Azango maeazango@frontpageafricaonline.com

Monrovia he walls of the Temple of Justice building reads, Let Justice Be Done to All. For the family of Hans Williams and Mardea Paykue, those words simply does not apply to them. Mardeas father, Oscar V. Paykue, laments in a recent interview with FrontPageAfrica that the system has failed his daughter and her fianc, Hans. Says Oscar: I hate to hear that name justice, and the slogan such as Let justice be done to all means, Let fiasco be done to all. The thing they called justice, I dont see it in Liberia. We build these big buildings and call it Justice Ministry, when it means fiasco Ministry, while Temple of Justice is now the Temple of fiasco, because I dont see any justice in Liberia but just names. What kind of justice do we have, when pile of cases on the dockets cannot be heard, then you talking about justice? Oscar says the case is justice delayed because since five years ago, we cannot hear anything. What kind of justice is that, is it fiasco justice? We want the government to provide the Ghanaian or Cuban pathologist. Look at my children still suffering in jail and up to now they are not saying anything. Old man Paykue, is the biological father of Madea Paykue, Hans Williams Fiance. And he was 79 when the incident occurs in the house he lived with his daughter Madea. But the 84-year-old-man who struggles as he spoke slowly because of a recent stroke, has also been waiting endlessly for an end to the case, but is afraid that justice is long delayed. Political wrangling I am not the judge, lawyer or county Attorney, so I cannot tell the government what to do; but all I can say is remove this rope from my neck and let me be free. This whole thing is some kind of political wrangling among the government and judicial system. So if we are right or wrong, it does not matter to the government, and what they are going to do, so what difference does it make? The government has the gavel in her hands and can knock it on anyones head; it is pleasing to them. Therefore, this is a government we depend on to give us justice, are not giving it to us. This case is special interest to those who want to see my children in jail. In March 2010, Defendants Hans and Mardea received a Verdict of Guilty and were Sentence to Death by hanging. The ruling was made by Judge Blamo Dixon, presiding judge of Criminal Court B at the Temple of Justice on Capitol Hill in Monrovia. The Supreme Court of Liberia is yet to rule on the appeal. The pair was arrested in January 2008 by the Liberia National Police (LNP) after the death of 13-year-old Angel Togba, a relative of Mardea and who until her death, lived with the couple as a foster daughter. Suicide or Murder Answer Remains a Mystery The pair told the court during the hearing that they discovered

the body of Angel hanging from the curtain rail in their guest bathroom in November 2007 and tried all they could to resuscitate her and at the same time rushed her to John F. Kennedy (JFK) Medical Center but Angel was pronounced Dead on Arrival. The state, however, charged and indicted the two for murder. In the indictment, defendant Hans Williams was accused of sexually abusing the 13-year-old girl while his wife was accused of strangulating Angel to death after she (Mardea) had discovered the sexual relationship between her husband and Angel. The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges brought against them.

I hate to hear that name justice, and the slogan such as Let justice be done to all means, Let fiasco be done to all. The thing they called justice, I dont see it in Liberia. We build these big buildings and call it Justice Ministry, when it means fiasco Ministry, while Temple of Justice is now the Temple of fiasco, because I dont see any justice in Liberia but just names. What kind of justice do we have, when pile of cases on the dockets cannot be heard, then you talking about justice? - Oscar V. Paykue
After the discovery of the body, the state instituted a team of Liberian police investigators to investigate the death of 13-year-old Angel. The investigators stated that their findings could not give any clue to link anyone to the crime. Therefore, they, in consultation with Dr. Anthony Quaye, a Liberian medical doctor who also conducted an autopsy on the body of Angel Togba, concluded that Angel committed suicide. The state, disregarded the report of the first investigative team from the LNP and commissioned a second investigation. Pathologist Suspect The second team was made up of Ghanaian homicide investigators from the Ghana Police Service who came along with a Cuban pathologist from the Police Hospital in Accra. The team, in consultation with the Cuban pathologist, concluded that Angel was strangulated to death. According to them, after thoroughly investigating the crime scene and taking the measurement of the alleged crime scene into consideration relative to the height of Angel, there was no way Angel could have hung herself. Dr. Quaye testified in open court that even though his autopsy report stated that Angel died of suicide, he had been coerced

The Shower where Angel's body was found

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

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Page 3

Barsee Williams 31, brother of Hans, says the family is very discouraged because the case has seen strings of political maneuvering, manipulations and torture as well.
Hans Williams Family Lament Perpetual Delay Barsee Williams 31, brother of Hans, says the family is very discouraged because the case has seen strings of political maneuvering, manipulations and torture as well. Because the then solicitor General Cllr. Wright, during the case said at the lower court, that he prayed the judge would convict these people and upon conviction an appeal would be taken to the Supreme Court, where he would go and hustle. The perpetual delay of this matter was based on the assertion made by Cllr Wright, Says Barsee. Barsee continued: This case has seen three judges, two transferred and one sacked. The first was Judge Taylor who under the law passed a ruling in favor of the family, that the body should be preserved for DNA analysis and forensic examination as a matter of right for this family. Upon passing the ruling, he was immediately sacked for doing so by then Justice Minister Philip Banks. Barsee says the second time was when, Judge Conto passed a ruling and termed the government action as mind boggling, because you cannot use a pathologist called Anthony Quaye, because there have been so many people convicted by Dr. Quayes report, of whom are languishing behind bars based on his report. Then you come back and condemn the same Quayes report, terming him as not being a licensed pathologist. So is the government trying to say all those Quaye convicted should be free because he was not a licensed pathologist when he did it? And the third time, was when Judge Gevon Smith recused himself from the case, based on a phone call from the then Chief Justice Johnnie Lewis. EJSs Revenge? The Coleman Conspiracy Barsee, measuring the distance with a tape line, from the shower rod which Angels body hanged to the floor indicated exact 6ft, pointed to the report that indicated the measurement was 4ft 9 inches. He said the measurement was a false miscalculation on the governments part, to indict his brother. How is it possible for the distance of a shower to be as low as 4ft 9 inches high? Does it mean, one would have to bend down before entering the shower? This is another fraud in the report from the government. Accusing the government of witch hunt, Barsee said the act was not done out of ignorance, but a mind set by the executive to witch hunt his brother and his wife based on grudge from the past. I am saying this, because the David Coleman case in 1955 is why the president is against my brother. Our father Charles Williams who was then commissioner in Clay, Bomi County, when David Coleman was caught and arrested in the sugarcane farm and he was turned over by my father to the government of President Tubman. So for this reason, the President is interested in my brother case, because rumor has it that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was the biological daughter of David Coleman. Citing instances, as to why he feels the President is witch hunting his brother, Barsee said during the presidents annual message in 2008, she made it clear without saying allegedly; that she was going to arrest the murderer who had rape the peoples daughter and cause her to take her life. Executive Railroading Gossip? I wont tell you they say, but right before my eyes in the presence of Bill Findley, Hans and Cllr. Dean on the night of the Angels death, Muna Sieh, who was then Police Director,

-Oscar V. Paykue

HANS WILLIAMS AND MARDEA PAYKUE


received a called from President Sirleaf that night, after my brother had informed the President of what had happened. And Muna Sieh told Steve Zargo, the then CID Chief, in our presence that the President had said Hans was having sex with the girl when Madea caught them, and she choked the girl to death. So this whole thing came from the Presidents office. Which means the Executive is running a railroad of gossip, and that was a mindset from the beginning. Due to this, our mother died in the United Stated. Barsee furthered said Judge Boima Conto released Hans and Madea on bail but then Justice Minister Philip Banks unilaterally took police and denied the courts actions. So the case has political maneuvering, manipulations and torture because the government lied in that the Ghanaian pathologist from the government did not come to court, so anyone knows if she is a ghost, because the autopsy report from the government printed in the Analyst Newspaper February 13, 2008 was unsigned. Still Lingering-4 Years After Appeal Barsee says the reason why the case is delayed at the Supreme Court is because the government trigged too many public sentiments when they paid people US$10, 20 and 50 at the court to stand with placards. I knew this because I was there when confusion broke out at the court, when some argued that they did not receive their share of the money. Cant you remember that the Judge once said his life was threatened during the trial? It was because he was threatened by the State and not the family. Answering the question as to if there is bad blood between his brother Hans Williams and former Justice Minister Philip Banks, he answered: There is no rift between my brother and Philip Banks but the fact is that Banks is used by the government to do her dirty work. The reason is, President Sirleaf supported Banks when he took the Nigerian mans money and used it personally, according to what the court said. How can a man be accused of committing a crime to go for investigation and you appoint him as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. When she even said Paul Mulbah with such record could not work in her government. So Banks is being used as rag, so who knows how the case will turn out when the President is controlling the Supreme Court, because after four years since appeal was taken, nothing has been done.

FrontPage EDITORIAL
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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

COMMENTARY

Commentary

SELECTIVE JUSTICE IN LIBERIA Failure on the ruling Unity Party government to hold the

ONE GROUP GETS PUNISHED; ANOTHER GO FREE BECOMING THE NORM IN UP-LED GOVERNMENT

REACTION TO PRESIDENT SIRLEAF ANNUAL MASSAGE


DASHWARD A. WUMAH <politicaldash@yahoo.com>
THE ISSUE OF LAND DISPUTES IN THE COUNTRY I want to take this time as a political commentator to show appreciation to President Sirleaf for the establishment of the Land Coordination Centers that are fully operational in Lofa, Margibi, Bong, Nimba and Maryland Counties to settle land disputes . I am afraid if land disputes are not handled in a timely faction, this too could lead to another wave of violent and blood share in Liberia. THE LIBERIA MARINE TRAINING INSTITUTE Special gratitude to president Sirleaf and her administration for reopening in October 2011 The Liberia Marine Training institute after closure since 1989, this institute graduated 80, bringing to over 500 the number of trained and certified Liberians who are now prepared for employment in the Maritime sector. Even though, during the course of last year the Maritime authority was in court battle with some cadets families who died on the beach. I encourage the government of Liberia to improve their level of training and improve training materials to avoid such occurrence. FOREIGN AFFAIRS The contribution of infantry platoon-size unit of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) joined the Africa International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA) the first time that our country is participating in peacekeeping operations in 52 years is a plus. Nevertheless, our own security at home needs improvement. SECURITY, PEACE, JUSTICE AND RULE OF LAW The celebration of a Decade of Peace in 2013 was a milestone achievement for us as a nation, regardless of our individual status, ethnicity, political and religious affiliations. We are all proud of this collective achievement, recognizing that violence, which knows no boundaries or differences, shatters and destroys; while peace pools the resources of a people, leading them to greater development. Under the leadership of the Ministry of National Defense, a 1,980-personstrong Armed Forces of Liberia continues to position itself to support a democratic environment through tactical and technical proficiencies and the development of a robust capacity to defend our territorial integrity. The Armed Forces Training Command, now headquartered at the newly renovated Todee Camp, assumed responsibility for tactical and proficiency training locally, and is presently training 140 new army recruits, which will be increased by some 400 recruits who were vetted and endorsed by the Joint Personnel Board. The AFL is also expanding its Engineering and Medical Units to assist in reconstruction projects and social service delivery. Similarly, the Coast Guard, of 82 persons, is expanding and strengthening its capabilities to patrol and protect our maritime domain, as evidenced by the arrests of several illegal fishing vessels in our waters. President Sirleaf spar decade of peace we all now enjoy as Liberians and affirmed the transformation of the Liberian Army under the leadership of the minister of National defense in her annual massage. My fear as a political commentator and a law-enforcement professional is the UNMIL drawdown plan is near, Liberia will be left to control their internal security. The security detail is compromise by our current Minister of National Defense, as evidence of the Ellens Corkrum secret recording of the Minister of National Defense. The critical question is; can the Liberian people trust their country security in the hands of the current minister of national defense?

SOMETHING UNHEALTHY is creeping up in Liberia today. Since the ushering in of the post-war government of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, a lot of officials accused of corruption or engagement in violations of public procurement policies have either walked scot free, thanks to a flawed judicial system or avoided prosecution in the absence of political will to fight the corruption cancer. A RECENT SUPREME COURT ruling hit to the core of the problem when the court ruled that former Minister of Lands, Mines and Energy, Dr. Eugene Shannon, grossly erred by extending the Bentley International Trading Incorporation concession agreement. READING THE ruling, Chief Justice Francis S. Korkpor Sr., pointed out that Minister Shannon lacks the legal authority to have extended the Bentley agreement to 15 years without any legal validity. The Supreme Courts pronouncement comes on the heels of an appeal for the Writ of Madamus, motion to rescind ruling and petition for declaratory judgment growing out of the case involving Bentley International and the Government of Liberia (GoL).

Liberia Telecommunications Authority( LTA) accountable for entering into a wasteful one million dollar plus lease agreement will validate the perception many have that the UP-led government is unserious about fighting corruption. At a time when donor nations are insisting on getting value for money, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that this LTA deal stinks to high heavens.

The purpose of this article is to critically analyze president Sirleaf state of the nation speech. Through a microscopic and political commentator point of view with no personal hate against the president but within the context of intellectualism. With 16 billion dollars in foreign aid to Liberia and the failure of the Sir leafs administration to deliver the Liberian people from ensconce of poverty is not only irritating but scaring. Madam Sirleaf continues to complain over the years that she became president of a broken country. Madam Sirleaf is now eight years into her administration. Will she continue to complain about becoming President of a wrecked and divided nation? With debt cancellation, President Sirleaf government is the first in Liberia history to received huge support from the international community, but fascinatingly the Liberian people continue to live in economic deficiency. President Sirleaf annual massage to the third session of the 53rd National Legislature of the Republic of Liberia, Madam Sirleaf spoke on many critical national issues. Some of those pressing issues include the state of the economy, land disputes, marine training institute, foreign affairs , security, peace, justice and rule of law, economic transformation ,youth empowerment ,human development and dual citizenship. THE STATE OF THE ECONOMY President Sirleaf spoke on the state of the Liberian economy as a huge success but I want to disagree with her assertion But we must all be reminded that our country is recovering from a low economic base where 90 percent of our productive capacity had been destroyed, which is arguably the greatest decrease in economic output recorded in any country since World War II. Coming from where we were a broken, destroyed and nearly incapacitated country we have made marked progress in economic revitalization and the restoration of basic social services as part of the governance pact with the Liberian people. Socioeconomic conditions have improved as a result of the combined strong efforts of the national government, the people of Liberia and our development partners. Disagreement to president Sirleaf affirmation on the state of the Liberian economy as a huge success, how President Sirleaf did measured the success of the Liberian economy in her annual massage? When it is a clear fact that the Liberian economy remains in an unacceptable condition, according to the World Food Program (20132017) An estimated 64 percent of Liberians live below the poverty line, of whom 1.3 million live in extreme poverty. Social safety nets are poorly developed. The country still depends on food imports and is vulnerable to economic shocks. Agricultural markets are poorly integrated, especially in rural areas, exacerbating food insecurity and poverty. Food insecurity affects 41 percent of the population and chronic malnutrition is high. Madam Sirleaf stated an increased of the national revenue which started in 2006 by an average of 29 percent each year, and total revenues, including contingent revenue and on-budget borrowing, rose from US$148 million in FY2006/7 to US$559 million in FY2012/13. Expenditure for budget year 2012/13 totaled US$593 million, an increase of 22 percent over the previous year and annual average growth of 28 percent over the seven-year period. The critical question I continue to ask as a political commentator is; how did the increased in the expenditure for previous budget years improved the lives of the ordinary Liberians? Our sisters and future mothers are still hanging around the streets corners at night waiting for men as means of their economic survivor.
v

IN APRIL 2013, the company entered into a 20-year mining agreement with the Government of Liberia(GoL), which was approved by the President of Liberia on May 10, 1978 and ratified by the Legislature, thereby becoming law. JUSTICE KORKPOR noted that, although the Bentley agreement was signed by the Lands Mines and Energy, it was also signed by the Minister of Finance, attested to by the Minister of Justice, approved by the President of Liberia and ratified by the Legislature, and as such, any extension within this agreement was wrong to be unilaterally done by an individual which the former Lands, Mines and Energy Minister did. Based on those circumstances, the Supreme Court dismissed and denied the Companys appeal and ordered the presiding Judge to take jurisdiction over the case and give effective Judgment. IN THE WAKE of the court ruling, a recent book by Canandian investor Len Lindstrom entitled Corruption 101-Liberia Style also cited Shannon, Roosevelt Jayjay, Miller and Sherman, who Lindstrom notes were principle signatories to illegal licenses issued by MLME over Liberty Properties, all of whom surely knew and understood the Mineral Law and the constitution of Liberia and consequently had to be fully cognizant of the utter illegality of their actions. DURING THE PERIOD, the investor says his company brought in some 21 geologists from Ghana and employed up to three hundred people in the forest, especially contract workers in the outline areas, working hard and heavy, transitioned into mineral expedition agreement. Lindstrom says all of those agreements were ratified under the current regime, under the UP government and have gone through by GEMAP, approved by the Ministry of Lands, Mines & Energy. Lindstrom lists nearly a dozen officials who played one role or the other in his current predicament. THOSE NAMED ARE: Jonathan Mason, who was minister of Lands, Mines and Energy at the time, Eugene Shannon, who replaced Mason in 2006, Albert Chie, Assistant Minister for Exploration, Murray Gessler, replaced Albert Chie as Assistant Minister of Exploration, Carlton Miller, replaced Murray Gessler as Assistant Minister for Exploration, Mulbah Willie, Deputy Minister of Operations, ECB Jones, replaced Willie as Deputy for Operations, John Nylander, Deputy Minister for Administration, Walter McCarthy, replaced Nylander as Deputy for Administration, Emmanuel Sherman, Head of the ministrys Cartographic Department and later replaced Miller as Assistant Minister for Exploration when Miller was shuffled to Assistant Minister of Planning.

You can read the full commentary on www. frontpageafricanonline.com


committing the government of Liberia to a lease agreement that made the government a tenant of a Chinese Company in Congo Town. More importantly, concerns have been expressed about the LTAs unilateral decision to lease a building for more than a million dollars when the same money could build more than one permanent structure for at least two or three government agencies. WE HOPE THAT the ruling Unity Party government will examine the LTA for what is no doubt a very wasteful venture, clearly in violation of the Public Procurement Concessions Commission which, according to a FrontPageAfrica investigation advised the LTA to explore the possibility of renovating a government owned building or even allocating a land to build one for itself. FAILURE on the part of this government to hold LTA accountable will validate the perception many have that the UP-led government is unserious about fighting corruption. At a time when donor nations are insisting on getting value for money, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that this LTA deal stinks to high heavens.

LATE LAST YEAR, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf suspended the entire board of national fixed line operator Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (Libtelco) with immediate effect, pending the outcome of an investigation into its alleged failure to stick to the provisions of the Public Procurement Act in concluding a contract with a European company, Ketter Telecom (K3). NOW COMES report that Ms. Angelique Weeks, Chair of the Liberia Telecommunications Authority(LTA) recently entered into a one million, one hundred fifty thousand United States Dollars lease agreement with a Chinese landlord valued at US$385,000.00(Three Hundred Eighty Five Thousand United States Dollars)per year, with a three-year upfront payment. THE FOUR-STORY BUILDING contains thirty-one rooms and six bathrooms situated on two lots of land. According to a source within the LTA, the lease agreement was sent to the Ministry of Justice in keeping with the Procurement Law. However, it appears that the Ministry of Justice was reluctant to sign off on the deal despite insistence of Weeks. One source said the ministry was reluctant

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT OUR STORIES ON THE WORLDWIDE WEB

Send your letters and comments to: editor@frontpageafricaonline.com


YOU WRITE; WE PUBLISH; THEY READ!

The Reader's Page

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COMMENTS FROM FPA ONLINE


FUMBLING EJS: LIBERIAN PREZ FUMBLES STATE OF NATION DELIVERY
MARTIN KPAHN I do not think FPA representation of the president's state of union address is fair. You were overly negative negative. While all may not be rosy both the negatives and the positives achieved should be highlighted not focusing almost exclusively on the negatives as you did. SYLVESTER MOSES It was a persuasive promise from a chef who announced a mouth watering menu of great dishes to a wolfish group of impatient diners. Is there enough time to prepare the foods, would all the ingredients be ready? Admittedly, mistakes and delays were made but the hungry diners must consider that though the dinner is late, the chef remorsefully understands they are hungry, and is rushing with the cooking. We ask for the patience of Swiss tennis stat Stan Wawrinka, the winner of the 2014 Melbourne Tennis Open, who after many tries finally defeated top - ranked Rafael Nadal. Reportedly Stan had these words - from a poem written by Nobel Laureate Samuel Beckett - tattooed on his left arm: Ever tried. Ever Failed. No Matter. Try Again. Fail Better. So in spite of wasted opportunities a lot can be achieved. And never mind that the argument was turned on its head that instability causes poverty, rather than poverty poses a threat to stability, it is gratifying that the linkage between the two was recognized. That is an incentive to focus on jobs, equality of opportunities, youth training, education, empowerment, decentralization, reconciliation, social justice and security sector professionalism and preparedness. Lets exercise forbearance, my people. WILLIAM PONDER FPA ,my advice is to follow the patterns of Western media especially those in the United States after a president gives an Annual Address. Interview both sides, those who take away something positive from the speech as well as others who (as you have interviewed here, feel that the speech didn't live up to expectations. This will create a balance set of views. From this presentation, it would appear from someone on the outside that after a two-hour speech, there was not one citizen out of the nearly 4 million people living in the country that had anything positive to say. We all understand Liberia has many challenges and there are many who feel a lot more needs to be done. However, let us also celebrate our successes while we hold ourselves to account for the failures. This is the only way we can build-on the successes and correct the failures in order move forward. Other than that, I want thank and congratulate FPA for its new roll-out of news coverage. There has been some major improvements. Phil George Top Commenter Umass Lowell With all due respect Sirleaf is too old and weak to be an effective President. Liberia needs a hands-on chief executive who can get out there every day and see what's going on because you can't trust those rascals calling themselves officials. No senior level official has been arrested and charged for corruption! She's a joke! Unfortunately we are a long way off from the next election. Folks, isnt it time to change the term of office to 4 years? Have we learned anything yet? George Alonzo Kamara CEO & Founder at Primecomputersstore.com This is the same president that came out and publically stated that "the education system of this country that I am currently ruling is a complete mess", it is during this very same government administration that (25000 or 25 thousand students fails the university of Liberia entrance; at which the entrance requirement was 50 for English, and 45 for map. Not a single students of this 25000 couldn't make this grades. At the time our belovely president took power, these listed students was in 4th grade. Now tell me fellow readers of this media from 4th grade up to 12th grade is 8 years. Therefore these first groups of students under our belovely president leadership, learn nothing but complete mess". This is why the university doesn't want to allow person with disabilities to enroll cause they will make the different. All these guy's does is to spared or crook with money to pass. very clear my good people. Now my next is the jobs facilities: according to the latest report from IMF, united nation, the unemployments rate is 90 percent. that is out of our population which is 3.4 millions. And our president is saying that over hundred of companies/NGO, employ 150 employees, other employ 90 women. If we do the map, we will be left with 60 to 75 percent left unemploy. Finally please university of Liberia, please sees reason to allow person with disabilities to enroll in our nation own university. Our constitution state that government is fully responsible to provide equal education, equal job employments, equal justice, equal security to all citizen of this nation. thanks the voice of the voiceless advocate.

BACKGROUND CHECKING AND THE LINDSTROM DEBACLE


The Editor, When a Canadian investor, Len Lindstrom, received a favorable judgment by the Supreme Court of Liberia against an agency of government recently, it brought to the fore a nagging issue that has bedeviled the government over the years; its dismal inability to vet or background check foreign investors, as well as its own employees, especially those returning from abroad. In this age of globalization and shrinking borders, background checks have become a mission critical risk mitigating tool to remove the veil of dishonesty from, for instance, a dishonest job applicant, or an investor with a reported criminal tendency who is less than forthcoming about the source of his investment funds. In 2009 Liberia was front and center in newspapers all over India involving a crooked government official who reportedly siphoned funds for development of his province to Liberia for investment in a mining concern. Madhu Khoda , the chief minister of Jharkand , according to the papers, and two of his senior colleagues stole millions to buy a coal mine in Liberia and real estate in Hong Kong and Indonesia. Khoda and his assistants were later indicted for embezzlement, money laundering and bribery by the Indian government. I got to learn about the Khoda debacle from an Indian associate of mine in Pune, India, who casually asked me in an email if the Liberian government had done any due diligence on Koda to determine the provenance of his wealth. In fairness to the government, I told Trilok at the time that the country was in financial dire straits and was bullish on foreign investments as a way of spurring job creation, besides, putting every investor under a microscope in terms of due diligence was beyond the governments capacity. This was back in 2009. In 2014 this argument has lost its luster. A simple Google search can yield a bountiful harvest of information, as was the case with the Indian minister. His corruption story was the headlines for months on the web based version of Indias dailies. That brings us to Len Lindstrom , CEO of Liberty International Mineral Corp., and of late, the darling of the Liberian media. Lindstrom came to Liberia under the radar of detection during Liberias Interim Government of National Unity (IGNU) . He came as a faith healer; his original mission was narrow, to save souls and heal the sick. He even boasted about curing Liberian children from terrible diseases, whether it is true or not, there has been no independent verification of Mr. Lindstroms healing hands. Fact is faith healer Lindstrom shed his church cassock and opted for the rugged gold mines of Liberia. He later admitted to completely divesting himself of the church, even to the point of giving up on attending church. Mr. Lindstrom had completed a 360 degree turnaround. His future was now inextricably linked to the mining sector of Liberia, but for a reason. He is reported, according to Canadian journalists, to have collected about $18 million from investors in his native Canada with a promise of a huge return on investments. Canadian columnist John Thomsen suggested in his column Rumors and Gossips that the former faith healer was a confidence man on the verge of orchestrating a scam. Thomsen published this email from a worried Liberty investor in his column: This e-mail from a reader: I noticed today in your online, 'Rumours and Things', 2010, that people cannot get in touch with Len Lindstrom. I tried the phone number that is still appearing online - and sure enough - a lady answered who is not with Len. She had the phone number for about 3 weeks. Can you tell me what you found out about Len? People including me - have invested money into his organization. What do we do? Where do we turn for answers? Thomsen responded: I dont know what to tell you because in these kinds of schemes, money is always lost, and the perpetrator gone from the scene. If the Liberian government agency or agencies clothed with interfacing with investors had done a cursory Google search of Len Lindstrom they would have discovered that he had been sanctioned by Alberta Securities, the body that regulates trade in stocks and investments in his Canadian province. The sanction against Lindstrom and his company is on the companys website at www.albertasecurities.com. Of course, none of the sanctions or the doubts his fellow Canadians had about his honesty made it into the pages of his seminal book on corruption in Liberia, cheekily entitled Corruption 101, Liberian Style. The book was focused on how he was wronged by the government, not how he allegedly scammed dozens, if not hundreds, of Canadian

citizens out of their life savings. The book , according to those who read it, catalogued his trials and tribulations at the hands of heavy-handed, corrupt government operatives whom he claimed shook him down and later stripped him off mining properties he legally acquired, and give them to another group of investors. According to Lindstrom, although this all began during the Interim Government of National Unity, the incoming Sirleaf government, however, made no efforts to right the wrong of its predecessor. That was until the recent intervention by Liberias Supreme Court. It is a critical imperative that contractual and property rights are respected. Nations that disregard those rights are universally panned, and are usually the ones in an advance state of dysfunction and rot, so it was quite easy to understand the court judgment in favor of Lindstrom. Background checks are a commonplace scenario even in social situations within the U.S. It is not uncommon for a potential female lover to run a check on her new silver tongue casanova, to ensure he is what he actually claims to be. The Been Verified app on Iphones, which does a background check on the fly, has seen an exponential increase in its user base, especially amongst female users. In the world of corporate and governmental hiring it becomes significantly important. An anonymous philosopher once said, the truth is out there waiting to be found. Vetting, background checks and topgrading are all part and parcel of the best practices of evaluating potential human capital. I run a boutique staffing agency, and deeply embedded in my evaluation of potential candidates for clients, is a regimen of background checking that includes criminal, educational, reference and credit check, of course with the permission of the candidate. Then comes the Topgrading or behavioral interview which clients in my neck of the woods in California put potential hires through after the various checks have pan out. Candidates may pass the educational, criminal and credit checks, but the behavioral interview is designed to bring out their true personality. You cannot fake this interview, which is paneled in some cases, by four or more professionals throwing situational questions at you. At some point during that interview your true personality comes to the fore. If you are a non-productive C player this interview will expose your weaknesses. The recent history of some Liberians from America going home for employment with the government has been littered with lapses by the government and some companies to adequately screen these Diaspora job applicants, hence reports of corruption, academic fraud, and even the case of a fugitive child molester in the employ of the government. Clearly, the most egregious and widely publicized example of the lapse is the case of the former head of the national airport , Ellen Corkrum, who is not only accused of financial improprieties, but had a tendency of illicitly recording the privileged and confidential conversations she had with government officials to prove, in essence, that the government was morbidly corrupt. These governmental actors assumed she was a trusted confidant, but she not only violated their trust and confidence, she placed them in the embarrassing position of being tarred and feathered in the court of public opinion, while she became the Mother Theresa of Liberian virtue, well, in the eyes of the Liberian media. Was this employee, given the critical responsibilities she was burdened with, adequately screened and vetted for the position of head of the nations major airport by the governments Civil Service Agency? The verdict is still out. I believe the application of an intense vetting regime, including a behavioral interview, not to mention a credit and reference check, would have saved the government the embarrassment of having an employee running wild with a hidden tape recorder. Her character flaws would have come through during the behavioral interview, or her credit report would have given the government a snapshot as to her fiscal aptitude as well as her overall integrity. Its the embarrassment to government that the lack of due diligence of investors and potential employee poses; the Lindstrom book could have devastating consequences to private/public sector investment, costing the country millions. It could be used as a reference point and a turn-off to investors who will opt to take their business elsewhere, because the focus of the book is the governments refusal to respect contract rights. Corkrums recording gives the impression of dysfunction, backstabbing and backbiting within government. A Lindstrom, with a government bashing book underscoring his victimhood at the hands of the Liberian government, or an Ellen Corkrum with secret recording devices could be avoided in the future, if a little bit of due diligence can be applied by the likes of the Civil Service Agency or the National Investment Commission, as well as the Liberian news media. Joe Cassell JM Cassell, jmcassell@libstaff.com Walnut Creek, Ca. 94597

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Rodney D. Sieh, Managing Editor, 0886-738-666; 077-936-138, editor@FrontPageAfricaonline.com; rodney.sieh@FrontPageAfricaonline.com Wade C. L. Williams, News Desk Chief, wade. williams@frontpageafricaonline.com; 0880664793 Francis F.B. Mulbah, Layout Editor; 0886639382 REPORTERS Sports Editor, Danesius Marteh, danesius.marteh@ frontpageafricaonline.com, 0886236528 Henry Karmo, henry.karmo@frontpageafricaonline. com Al-varney Rogers al.rogers@frontpageafricaonline. com, 0886-304498

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THE WHOLE TRUTH?


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The chair of the Liberia Telecommunications Authority(LTA) Angelique Weeks finally responded to a FrontPageAfrica inquiry regarding her decision to enter into a $US1 million lease agreement with a Chinese Company, Qinjian International for a building the LTA intends to use as an office space. What the chair has not been able to answer are the following: Why didnt LTA use such enormous amount to build a building of their own? Is spending one million plus dollars on a lease property a good investment for the LTA and value for money for Liberia and its international partners? Did the LTA seek approval from the Public Procurement Concessions Commission before advancing on the lease property? Documents in our possession prove otherwise
n Wednesday, January 29, 2014, FrontPageAfrica submitted a list of questions to the Chair of the Liberia Telecommunications Authority, Hon Angelique Weeks, regarding documents in our possession which suggesting a serious waste of taxpayers money when the LTA sub leased a building from a Chinese company, Qinjian International for a reported US$1.1 million dollars for three years. The chair initially appeared reluctant to respond to the questions submitted but finally did so on Monday, February 03, 2014, after the publication of our story. For the benefit of our readers, we bring you the following exchange which we hope will shed some light on the matter. Please note the LTA chair did not answer three key questions in her response to our inquiry. Documents in our possession prove contrary. We have not received responses from Ms. Weeks on the following: D. Couldnt the LTA use such funds, if they have it to actually build a building of their own? E. Do you think spending one million plus dollars on a lease property is good investment for the LTA and value for money for Liberia and its international partners? F. Finally, did the LTA seek approval from the Public Procurement Concessions Commission before advancing on the lease property? THE ORIGINAL INQUIRY Hon Weeks, Hope all is well. We recently came in possession of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Liberia Telecommunications Authority(LTA) and Qingjian International(Lib) Group Development Co.

LTA BOSS ISSUES PARTIAL RESPONSE TO $US 1.1 MILLION WASTE CONTROVERSY

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ltd.(CNQC) to sub lease a four-story office building containing thirty-one rooms and six bath rooms situated on two lots of land, lying and situated on the Congotown Back Road, approximately 100 yards from the First Baptist Church, Congo Town. The price tag is said to be in the tone of S$385,000.00(three hundred eighty five thousand United States Dollars per year, and to pay three years up front. The total LTA would pay the Chinese landlord would come to US$1,155,000.00(one million, one hundred, fifty five thousand united states dollars) We plan on running a story and are seeking clarification on the following: A. Would this building replace the current two rental properties the LTA is currently using? B. How does the LTA intend to fund this project? Who will pay? C. During your recent

confirmation hearing before the Senate you insinuated that the LTA was unable to effectively carry out its functions because of lack of funds to procure certain equipment. Dont you think the purchase of such an elaborate building would raise a red flag especially in the wake of recent declaration from the Minister of Finance that the LTA has not met its commitments to support the national budget? D. Couldn?t the LTA use such funds, if they have it to actually build a building of their own? E. Do you think spending one million plus dollars on a lease property is good investment for the LTA and value for money for Liberia and its international partners? F. Finally, did the LTA seek approval from the Public Procurement Concessions Commission before advancing on the lease property? Looking forward to hearing from you before going to

press. We are also open to conduct an interview with you regarding this at a time of your convenience. Sincerely Rodney D. Sieh Publisher, FrontPageAfrica www.frontpageafricaonline. com Ms. Weeks Response Mr. Sieh: Please find below, the LTA's written responses to the questions you have raised relative to our New Office Building. I've just learned that my staff has not yet arranged the interview you requested. However, I am still amenable to doing said interview if you wish. Thanks, CHAIR------->A. FRONTPAGEAFRICA: The price tag is said to be in the tone of US$385,000.00 (three hundred eighty five thousand United States Dollars per year, and to pay three years up front. The total LTA would pay the Chinese landlord would come to US$1,155,000.00 (one million, one hundred,

fifty five thousand united states dollars)* ANGELIQUE WEEKS: The initial term of the Lease Agreement between LTA and CNQC for LTA's New Office Building is for three (3) years, at $385,000 per year, payable yearly at the commencement of each Lease year. While this amount might seem significant, it is not, taking into consideration, the Cost Benefit Analysis conducted in connection with selecting the subject property, which indicates overall annual cost savings for the LTA through the consolidation of all offices and staff. FRONTPAGEAFRICA: Would this building replace the current two rental properties the LTA is currently renting? WEEKS: The LTA offices were housed in *three* rental properties, not two. In addition, the World Bank financed WARCIP Liberia Project, for which the LTA is Project Implementing Agency, occupies a fourth rental property. Staff from all four buildings can be accommodated in the LTA's New Office Building. The three (3) properties leased by

the LTA over the past several years preceding lease of the New Office Building are: 1. Third floor of the United Methodist Church LAC Building and generator house on 12th Street. This site housed three (3) of LTA's five Departments (Engineering & Technology; Licensing & Regulations; and Government & Consumer Affairs. 2. Entire building on the V.P. Road in Congo Town to accommodate our Administration Operations and Legal Department and the Office of the Chairperson of the LTA. 3. Second floor of the Pan African Travel Agency Building In Congo Town, which houses the International Gateway Services Department. The LTA's New Office Building provides a single location to house all of our operations, staff and Spectrum Monitoring Equipment when acquired, while we continue to look for a suitable location to build our very own facility with enough space to accommodate the anticipated growth of the LTA.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

LILONGWE, MALAWI t the end of a three-day State Visit to Malawi, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and her host, President Joyce Banda, witnessed the signing of an Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation between the two Governments, as a framework for consolidating the existing ties of economic advancement between both countries. The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan, signed on behalf of the Liberian Government, while the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, MP Ephraim Mganda Chiume, signed for the Malawian Government. According to a dispatch from Lilongwe, under the Agreement, which will form the basis of a Joint Commission for Cooperation, the two Governments will cooperate in a number of areas, including agriculture and livestock; trade, industry and tourism; monetary and financial arrangement; development and utilization of natural resources; health, education, development and utilization of human resources; institutional development; irrigation and water development; gender mainstreaming, women empowerment and children and social welfare; and natural conservation and environmental management. At the invitation of the President, Dr. Joyce Banda, President Sirleaf paid a three-day State Visit to Malawi from Saturday, February 1, to Monday, February 3, 2014. At a State Banquet Saturday evening, President Banda said her compatriots were very excited about the Liberia leaders visit to Malawi. It is with great joy that I welcome you on behalf of the Malawian people, my dear sister. Your visit is historic and memorable because you are the first female President to visit Malawi, President Banda said. She believed the visit signified the strong bond of friendship that exists between the two countries and peoples. President Banda pointed out that upon taking office nearly two years ago, she chose to visit Liberia first because, during her very difficult political days, President Sirleaf was one person she could speak freely to and had been her role model and mentor for a very long time in her private life, and was her best choice for counsel due to her vast experience in politics, governance and interest in women issues. In response, President Sirleaf, who was visiting the

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LIBERIA, MALAWI SIGN ECONOMIC, TECHNICAL PACT


At End of State Visit, Malawi and Liberia Sign Agreement, Cooperation
countries commitment to the peace and security agenda on the continent, and reaffirmed their support for the Ezulwini Consensus that seeks to ensure a meaningful role for Africa in the UN Security Council. During the visit, President Sirleaf toured pavilions of products mounted by Malawian market women at the Bingu International Conference Centre (BICC). The market women included a group called MWAI Women, an affiliate of the Joyce Banda Foundation, and it is President Bandas initiative to economically and socially empower women. In her address, President Sirleaf encouraged the market women to work hard in their small-scale businesses in order to uplift the livelihood of their households. She underscored the positive contribution these women are making towards the development of the country. President Banda, for her part, expressed the intention to replicate, in Malawi, the concept and design of the Liberian markets that are fully equipped with facilities such as crches, banks, clinics, and appropriate sanitation. On Sunday, February 2, the Liberian leader launched the Malawian Professional Womens Dialogue at a Breakfast Meeting held at BICC. The event brought together Malawian professional women from public, private, security and business sectors, as well as from civil society organizations. Professional women were afforded an opportunity to dialogue, share, network, and create a common purpose of improving participation of women in different sectors of society. At that Dialogue, the two Heads of State recommitted themselves to appoint more women in decision-making positions, in line with the 50-50 Gender Protocols of the UN, AU and SADC. Later in the afternoon, President Sirleaf, accompanied by the host, travelled to Salima for a switch-on ceremony of Kambwiri Malawi Rural Electrification Project (MAREP 7). MAREP is a program aimed at providing electricity to the rural masses. The Malawi Government embarked upon it, realizing that energy is key to the countrys socioeconomic development. The two leaders addressed a development rally. Prior to her departure on Monday, February 3, President Sirleaf delivered a Public Lecture at the BICC and the two Presidents addressed a joint press conference at the same venue.

country for the first time in 20 years, thanked President Banda and the Malawian people for the great welcome received by her delegation, and extended greetings from the Liberian people, particularly the women and children who are dear to the hearts of both Presidents. Marveling at the changes that have taken place in Malawi, President Sirleaf said, I see new roads, taller buildings, improved telecommunication, and increased electricity. All this progress is a symbol and signal of a transforming Africa with increased annual growth rate. She said that democratization in Africa is occurring at a higher speed, with the participation of a vibrant civil society. She applauded President Banda for her courage to rise tall and meet the challenges confronting Malawi, and for overcoming them. During the visit, the two

African leaders held fruitful private bilateral talks aimed at consolidating the relations between the two Governments, and held discussions on many regional and international issues. On bilateral relations, the two Heads of State expressed appreciation for the excellent ties of friendship and cooperation that exist between their two countries and peoples. They reaffirmed their willingness to further deepen the relations. President Banda highlighted the fact that President Sirleaf, being the first female President in Africa, has been her role model, mentor and a source of inspiration in the 21 months of her presidency. She said President Sirleaf paved the way for African women to aspire for high leadership positions in their countries. She also mentioned that she had learned from her counterpart that Africa cannot develop

if the African woman is left behind. On regional issues, the Liberian President congratulated her counterpart for the able manner in which she is steering the agenda of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), in her capacity as current Chairperson of the organization. President Sirleaf particularly commended President Banda for making Malawi proud, with the tribute she made on behalf of SADC, at the burial ceremony of the late former South African President Nelson Mandela. The two African leaders emphasized the fact that although their countries are distance apart, they have a lot in common, including having female presidents; and being members of the United Nations (UN), African Union (AU) and the Group of 77 countries (G77). They reiterated their

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TIME FOR HONESTY


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POLITICS

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

LIBERTY FROWNS ON UP-LED GOVERNMENTS FAILURE TO ARTICULATE BOLD VISION FOR RECONCILIATION
Wade C. L. Williams, wade.williams@frontpageafricaonline.com

Monroviahe opposition Liberty Party (LP) of Cllr. Charles Walker Brumskine says, the Unity Party-led Government under the stewardship of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has again failed to articulate a bold vision to bring the nation together in genuine reconciliation. The party in a strongly worded response to the Presidents eight annual State of The Nation Address delivered on January 27, 2014 before the legislature, told journalists at its party headquarters on the Old Road that she has now shifted the burden for reconciliation on the National Human Rights Commission which has been commissioned to conduct what the party calls a comprehensive ethnographic study of Liberias Pavala Hut system, within the next two years. Liberty Party has repeatedly reminded the President and her government that of all the work she has been called to do on behalf of the Liberian people by virtue of her position none is more important than the need to reconcile the nation, states the party in a statement read by Montserrado County Senatorial Aspirant, Benjamin Sanvee. The party criticized President Sirleaf for not giving the issue of reconciliation the attention it deserves and only mentioning the subject in passing during her state of the nation address delivered a week ago. The Presidents 2014 Annual Message devoted only 5 short paragraphs, in a 45-page speech, to National Reconciliation and these paragraphs were buried in the section titled Governance and Public Institutions, the partys statement averred on Monday. This treatment of National Reconciliation was a slight improvement over the 2013 message in which the subject was discussed in only 3 short paragraphs. But as expected, the treatment of this national imperative in this years message was no different than that of the 2013 message in terms of substance. President Handicapped? The Liberty Party says Liberia is a nation whose history is replete with gross inequities and economic and social injustice as a result of years of civil unrest; therefore genuine national reconciliation has to be the foundation upon which all reconstruction works should be built. The party says that the nation is emerging from a brutal civil war, which was characterized not only by inhumane acts of atrocities, but also political intrigues and betrayals making reconciliation something that should be of huge national significance, but the government

under President Sirleaf has not seen it so. Unfortunately, the President has proven handicapped to use the bully pulpit of the presidency to lead the building of this foundation; we have now squandered 10 years of opportunity to at least begin an earnest effort to heal the nation, says the LP. Continued LP: Because so much depends on having a reconciled nation, Liberty Party is once again calling on the President to show courage on this issue. We are calling on her to launch a vigorous effort in 2014 to begin an honest reconciliation process. While the Liberty Party supports the Palava Hut Program, which the President has now endorsed obviously with reluctance, we believe that no genuine national reconciliation can occur if the national leadership is held in suspect. Address gross inequalities The party said in addition to showing leadership on the issue of healing the nation, President Sirleaf would also need to take what it calls bold actions this year to begin an honest effort to address the issue of gross economic inequity; something it says has been at the foundation of Liberias national upheavals. This nation cannot enjoy long-term peace and prosperity with only 7% of its population owning 90% of its wealth and 70% of the Liberian people living on less than US$1.25 per day, says LP. The LP which has a consistency in critiquing the Presidents annual messages says true reconciliation encompasses not simply a recognition of the issues of national discord but also and more importantly the mounting of an honest, transparent, and timely effort to mitigate those issues. Liberian families making a living on one-two, one-two market businesses do not need handouts, the party says. Continued LP: They need opportunities to grow that business to earn more. But anything as simple as a long period of sickness from malaria or typhoid or dysentery can devastate those families finances, sending them into extreme poverty, causing their children to drop out of school, and putting them in long-term debt. Access to improved health and sanitation services can prevent that from happening. Realign priorities Speaking on a range of issues as it dissects the Presidents annual message, the LP again called for the re-alignment of the governments fiscal priorities outlined in the national budget.

The party says that broadening access to assets such as land and affordable housing will lift more Liberians out of poverty and into wealth than any low-paying job. Programs that expand access to technology and new market opportunities, in the sub-region and further abroad, can reduce trade imbalances and bring more Liberians into middle-income status than any low-paying job in a concession, the LP says. Social policy innovations in preventive health and advanced education, with a commitment to giving every Liberian a fair chance to enjoy the benefits of our growth will do more to stabilize Liberia than handouts received from the government or a foreign investor. The Party wants the government to make readjustments to the total proposed allocations in the national budget to increase spending on health, education, social development services, infrastructure and basic services for the people of Liberia. The party calls on the government to make the appropriations for these sectors exceed 35% of the total budget by FY 2014/15. Where will the money come from to do this? It can come from the cash windfalls as a start: -- the one-off payments from sign-on bonuses now being used to cover revenue gaps but in reality being siphoned through corruption, says the LP. Continued LP: How will the government balance its budget? By her own reporting, the government should have spent US$593 million (more than half a billion U.S. dollars) in 2012/13. In 2004/05, the governments budget was only US$80 million. The challenge, therefore, has not been revenue but spending prudently what we have had. And our windfalls have not been well spent. General and special allowances should be kept below the 2011/2012 budget level. This would release more money for social spending. The LPs response came as a shock to many as some members of the opposition has accused the party of always giving the government a pat on the back, something the party disagrees with.

LIBERTY PARTYS RESPONSE TO THE 2014 ANNUAL MESSAGE OF THE PRESIDENT OF LIBERIA Delivered By Benjamin Sanvee Montserrado County SenatorialAspirant, Liberty Party (February 3, 2014)
Ladies and Gentlemen, on Friday, January 24 2014, Senator NyonbleeKarnga Lawrence, on behalf of Liberty Party, delivered what we called a Prequel to the Presidents 2014 Annual Message. That effort, as we indicated, was to remind the President of the issues that we believed were foremost on the minds of the Liberian people and about which they were going to be listening for a redress. We also made a promise in our Prequel that Liberty Party intended to continue its tradition of providing a response to the Presidents Annual Message, reflecting on the content of the message in order to comment on those areas that are of priority interest to all of us. Our response today is, therefore, in fulfillment of that promise. Let me begin this statement by giving kudos to the President for fulfilling her constitutional and traditional duties of presenting her administration's legislative program for the ensuing legislative session and reporting to the Legislature on the state of the Republic. We look forward to a comprehensive report on the economic condition of the Republic, covering not only projected revenue, but also actual revenue as well as expenditures. Scrupulous compliance with the constitution is a necessary precondition for our long term peace. OUR RESPONSE As expected, President Sirleaf pointed to significant advances in economic growth over the last eight years. Speaking of GDP growth, we heard that Liberia was the third highest in the ECOWAS region and well above the Sub-Saharan average of 2.5 percent between 2006 and 2013. Liberty Party congratulates the President and her government on this achievement. Growth in the

LIFE STILLVERY DIFFICULT


Liberty Party Responds To President Sirleaf State of The Nation Address

GDP means more wealth or, put simply, more money is coming into Liberia. Tothe Presidents credit, the governments leadership in reforming the fiscal system created the right environment for significant investment inflows, and for reactivation of our traditional economic sectors. What the President did not mention, however, is that the benefits of GDP growth have been more broadly spread in Nigeria, Ghana, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Senegal than in Liberia. When we consider the Gini coefficient, an economic and social development indicator, which measures how the money coming in a country is distributed, it puts Liberia at the very bottom.

Liberty Party would also like to congratulate President Sirleafon the ground breaking for the rehabilitation of the Mount Coffee hydro dam and power plant, and for the Cross-Border Project, the Lofahydro-power plants, and the expansion into high speed telecommunications. We were especially pleased to hear of her commitment not to repeat the mistakes of the past particularly on the issue of inequality which has been a major source of our fragility and driver of instability. And it is here we begin to have our major differences with the President. The President seems to believe that fiscal prudence and sustained

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

economic growth is possible in an environment of high corruption. To the contrary, evidence shows that corruption can undermine all the well-meaning efforts of the government. A clear example is the County Development Fund and Social Development Fund mechanisms. Ostensibly designed to empower local government to become more involved in selecting and implementing their own development initiatives, these mechanisms have become another cash cow that corrupt officials fight over in some counties. By denying citizens access to the basic services and social benefits they need to improve themselves, corruption hurts the poor more than any other group of citizens. And until a clear strategy for mitigating corruption and systemic losses is implemented acrossthe government, only a few will continue to benefit from all the on-going developments. Liberian families making a living on one-two, one-two market businessesdo not need handouts. They need opportunities to grow that business to earn more. But anything as simple as a long period of sickness from malaria or typhoid or dysentery can devastate those families finances, sending them into extreme poverty, causing their children to drop out of school, and putting them in long term debt. Access to improved health and sanitation services can prevent that from happening. Additionally, President Sirleaf seems to see those Liberians who demand a fair share of the benefits from the hundreds of thousandsof hectares of our most productive land granted to foreign businesses as unreasonable extortionists. We beg to disagree. Evidence clearly shows that these large land grantswill contribute to long term food insecurity in the surrounding towns and villagesbecause they deprive villagers of farmland. Furthermore, the jobs created for Liberians through these investment incentive contracts and concessions are low-paying jobs that add little more than subsistence livelihood for our people. A foreign business receiving a no-tax investment incentive for a hotel venture, for example, will hire Liberians as cleaners, security guards, drivers, and in other non-skilled positions only. There will be no skill transfer and no Liberian will be a genuine shareholder in any of these ventures. Any and all the revenues will accrue directly to the business, to government, and back into the hands of ruling elites. Nevertheless, Liberty Party believes Liberia desperately needs inflows of foreign investments and technology in a free market environment;this should be fully embraced. But a paradigm shift in how we form partnerships and embrace foreign investors is desperately needed. For example, and much to the credit of President Sirleafs government, all of the new concession agreements promise outgrower schemes, contract farming opportunities, and linkages to Liberian supply chains. But these are on paper only;these opportunities never come to reality.As in the past, the concessions will be economically de-linked from the rest of Liberia. The investors bring in their own technical staff, use their own outside suppliers, and leave it to the government to develop the outgrowers. Eventually, the produce will be exported, revenue paid abroad, and only a small portion for salary and benefits for low-paid Liberian workers will enter the Liberian economy. We saw this happen before with tree crops, mining, and logging. We call on President Sirleaf to ensure that when one tree is planted by a concession in rubber or oil palm or any other tree crop on its plantation, another tree must be planted on the land of the surrounding towns and villages, by and for the local small farmers. The concessionaire must commit to providing technical assistance, to buy the produce of the surrounding towns and villages at fair farmgate price, to processing in Liberia, and to doing business with Liberians. Moreover, we call on the Government to put into place arrangements to acquire and set aside non-tradable shares that can be purchasedby Liberians at a later date. This would make Liberians genuine stakeholders in these large investments. Inclusive economic growth is possible only if Liberians become genuine stakeholders in these ventures through the very same new market mechanisms proposed by the President. In this regard, the new funding mechanisms proposed for the rubber sector, the US$22 million dollars placed in commercial banks for the agricultural and construction sectors, the US$11.6 million special financing vehicle intended for small farmers, and the 25% set aside in public procurement for Liberian businesses, as announced by the President, are welcomed by the Liberty Party. But while acknowledging the 25% set aside in public procurement for Liberian businesses, Liberty Party is constrained to remind the President that there is a Liberianization Policy that is crying out for enforcement by her government. Notwithstanding, the Presidents proposed new funding mechanisms and set asides, although well intended, will soon

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vanish without the requisite public accounting of who received what, what impact was made, and how the money contributed to the reduction of poverty and inequality in our country. Liberty Party has repeatedly called for a re-alignment of the fiscal priorities outlined in the national budget with the publicly pronounced priorities of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as a starting point. Over the long term, broadening access to assets such as land and affordable housing will bring more Liberians out of poverty and into wealth than any low-paying job. Programs that expand access to technology and new market opportunities, in the subregion and further abroad, can reduce trade imbalances and bring more Liberians into middle-income status than any low-paying job in a concession. Social policy innovations in preventive health and advanced education, with a commitment to giving every Liberian a fair chance to enjoy the benefits of our growth will do more to stabilize Liberia than handouts received from the government or a foreign investor. Liberty Party hasresponded consistently to all previous annual messages and budget speeches, primarily calling on the government to increase social investments and hold the growth

subject was discussed in only 3 short paragraphs. But as expected, the treatment of this national imperative in this years message was no different than that of the 2013 message in terms of substance. The President again failed to articulate a bold vision to bring the nation together. Now,she shifts the burden for reconciliation to the National Human Rights Commission which is going to spend the better part of the next two years conducting a comprehensive ethnographic study of Liberias Pavala Hut system. The 2015 limited section of the Annual Message on this subject is most likely to be a progress report on this study. Liberty Party has repeatedly reminded the President and her government that of all the work she has been called to do on behalf of the Liberian people by virtue of her position none is more important than the need to reconcile the nation. For a nation coming out of a civil war characterized not only by inhumane acts of atrocities but also by political intrigues and betrayals; and a nation whose history is replete with gross inequities and economic and social injustice, genuine national reconciliation has to be the foundation upon which all reconstruction works rest. Unfortunately, the President has proven handicapped to use the bully pulpit of the presidency to lead the building of this foundation; we have now squandered 10 years of opportunity to at least begin an earnest effort to heal the nation. Because so much depends on having a reconciled nation, Liberty Party is once again calling on the President to show courage on this issue. We are calling on her to launch a vigorous effort in 2014 to begin an honest reconciliation process. While the Liberty Party supports the Palava HutProgram which the President has now endorsed obviously with reluctance, we believe that no genuine national reconciliation can occur if the national leadership is held in suspect. In addition to showing leadership on the issue of healing the nation, the President would also need to take bold actions in 2014 to at least begin an honest effort to address the issue of gross economic inequity. This issue has been at the foundation of our national tension. This nation cannot enjoy long term peace and prosperity with only7% of its population owning 90% of its wealth and 70% of the Liberian people living on less than US$1.25 per day. True national reconciliation involves not simply a recognition of the issues of national discord but also and more importantly the mounting of an honest, transparent, and timely effort to mitigate those issues. CONCLUSION The Presidents 2014 Annual Message must have been a disappointment to the thousands of Liberians who were anticipating a bold vision to deal with the bread and butter and reconciliation issues that Liberians care deeply about. She reported growing GDP numbers but made no connection between those figures and the life of the average Liberian. The economy continues the historical trend of benefiting only a tiny percentage of the population. Liberty Party calls on the President to manage and employ the countrys resources to lift all Liberians, not just a select few. After more than 8 years in power, life is still very difficult for the majority of the Liberian people. National reconciliation is not an issue that can be simply wished away; it is too big and foundational to our national endeavor to be disposed of that way. Liberty Party again calls on the President to give this issue the attention it deserves. The President and her government need to move beyond such symbolic things as football matches and begin implementing concrete programs to heal the nation. We must believe that this President means well; no one assumes the Presidency with the intent to fail. In spite of those with whom she has surrounded herself, the President should be reminded that the buck stops at her desk.. Her legacy is on the line ..it is in all of our collective interest that this administration succeeds.. So she must ACT now before its too late. We remain vigilant... And in this case Madame President, Time is not on your side. May God bless all Liberians and save our nation!

Liberty Party has repeatedly called for a re-alignment of the fiscal priorities outlined in the national budget with the publicly pronounced priorities of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as a starting point.
of recurrent expenditures in check. We asked for readjustments to the total proposed allocations in the national budget to increase spending on health, education, social development services, infrastructure and basic services for the Liberian People with the goal of having appropriations for those sectors exceed 35% of the total budget by FY 2014/15. Where will the money come from to do this? It can come from the cash windfalls as a start: -- the one-off payments from sign-on bonuses now being used to cover revenue gaps but in reality being siphoned through corruption. How will the government balance its budget? By her own reporting, the government should have spent US$593 million (more than half a billion U.S. dollars) in 2012/13. In 2004/05, the governments budget was only US$80 million. The challenge,therefore, has not been revenue but spending prudently what we have had. And our windfalls have not been well spent. General and special allowances should be kept below the 2011/2012 budget level. This would release more money for social spending. We again call for a fundamental shift in emphasis in our investment incentive code from giving priority and special project incentives to new foreign investors to prioritizing industry-wide incentives especially in agriculture and local processing, and to make those incentives available to all involved in the industry without the government picking and choosing. We again call for strengthening our own local entrepreneurs through preferential access to government procurement opportunities, to allow Liberian vendors, suppliers, and contractors to move up the line to receive payment for goods and services, and to receive special assistance to get into the export market while improving cross-border (transit) trade with countries in the subregion. Therefore, the 25% set aside in public procurement for Liberian businesses is a step in the right direction. We also asked the government to streamline and reduce the fees associated with trade transactions, especially export related fees, to boost the returns to commercial ventures and to encourage higher farmgate prices for our cocoa, coffee, and rubber producers. The Presidents 2014 Annual Message devoted only 5 short paragraphs, in a 45-page speech, to National Reconciliation and these paragraphs were buried in the section titled Governance and Public Institutions. This treatment of National Reconciliation was a slight improvement over the 2013 message in which the

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CLEVERLY BANKRUPTING LIBERIA I


Monrovian the aftermath of a FrontPage Africa investigation which uncovered over one million United States dollars being spent by the Liberia Telecommunication Authority (LTA) to a Chinese landlord for rental fee for three years upfront payment, Liberians having been expressing their dissatisfaction about how government continues to spend money on private buildings while her own facilities are lying in ruins. FrontPage Africa sampled the views of several Liberians regarding the recent lease agreement signed between the biggest regulatory body of telecommunications in Liberia (LTA) and a Chinese landlord in which about US$385,000 is to be paid annually in rental fees. Albert S. Doe:

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VOICES

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LIBERIANS DISENCHANTED WITH LTA OVER HUGE RENTAL SPENDING


Stephen D. Kollie, stephenkollie13@gmail.com 0776329124

Solomane M. Turay:

FAKE LAWMAKER VOWS TO CONTINUE IMPERSONATION

Says he needs a Job

I think this money is intended to bankrupt the entire economy of our country because this money is not being used in the rightful manner. It baffles us a lot to see such a huge sum of money being spent by the LTA when the lives of the ordinary people living on less than a dollar a day is not being improved. Take into consideration you paying ninety six thousand two hundred and fifty dollars per month which amounts to three hundred eighty-five thousand dollars per year to a Chinese company than what becomes of the ordinary people. There is a need for the LTA to desist from such an attitude and see how best they can put some money in the Liberian people coffer than to be spending money to people that will not benefit the Liberian people. I believe that Angelique Weeks shes part of every agreement and maybe probably, I am afraid this money in itself is not going all to the Chinese people thats the reason why she has been Necodimusly ensuring that this agreement is signed. But I strongly believe that a true Liberian will not go and give a Chinese company three hundred and eighty-five thousand for a year leaving the Liberian people in abject poverty. I think Madam Weeks needs to resign because shes not in the interest of the Liberian people for the fact that this lady can give such huge money to a Chinese company not even a Liberian company. William F. Mason:

I think this is a dark day for the government of Liberia and its people for such money to be leaving like this to a Chinese company. I think the head of the LTA should do the honorable thing by resigning because she is not working in the interest of the Liberian people. Besides that we are spending huge amount of money on internet and other telecommunication system in Liberia and I think that money could be spent to even improve our fiber optic cable where we could have a better internet service. The government has a lot of vacant land so they can try and build their own structure than spending one million plus just for three years.

D. Lawrence George Jr.: I see the spending of this money as a complete form of corruption. In recent time, we monitored a situation where the government of Liberia spent over two hundred million on foreign public relations that which is very much disastrous for a country that is considered to be poor in Africa. The one point one million dollars can be used to improve our educational sector, especially the laboratories. So to hear that this sum of money is being used just as rental fees and especially is being given to the Chinese people, I feel its very mush ugly for our economy. To hear this kind of news it fuel tension in a country like ours. Because the layman will ask but we live in poverty and we see government spending this kind I do believe that the LTA is in error and what I think is best for of huge money? LTA to do is to try and reverse that agreement. By spending such One thing I want to make very clear is that the government of a huge amour of money on building that belongs to a foreigner, Liberia needs to build her own buildings. The government spends I think this government is in error. That money should have been huge sum of money annually on the issues of renting of buildings used for provisions of public utilities that will help to improve the and mind you those monies we pay leaves the country. So the lives of the masses. Vast majority of the population dont have government should construct her own buildings that can be used to carry out her activities. Government over the years has been access to basic necessities. So, I think that amount would be used to improve some of spending very unwisely as it relates to the issue of buildings those areas. The LTA has been doing extremely well in terms of and I think this is not healthy for our economy. Our economy Telecommunications regulation but spending this kind of money is graduating from the background of backwardness. The money now is kind of irrelevant. They should be the one helping to boom they are using is depriving government of needed development. our economy by enforcing the rightful decision to help generate That money can be used to improve the telecommunication sector so that people in the leeward counties can communicate with their funding that will boom our economy. people here.

MONROVIAman impersonating to be a member of the 53rd National Legislature of Liberia has been arrested by the Liberian National Police in Monrovia. Mr. Isaac Kamara in his early 40s was Monday morning arrested by Officers of the Liberian National Police (LNP) for impersonating as a Lawmaker and attempting to extract money from the Acting City Mayor of Monrovia, Clara Mvogo. According to the LNP, Kamara encountered the Mayor at the Capitol Building last Monday during President Ellen Johnson Sirleafs annual message where he introduced himself as a Lawmaker from Lofa County and exchanged cell contact with the mayor but has since continuously harassed the mayor for gas coupon and Scratch cards. The police also told newsmen that as a result of Mr. Kamaras continuous harassment the mayor called Representative Edwin Snowe of Montserrado County to ascertain if he knows Representative Kamara, explaining how he has continuously harassed her. Accordingly, Representative Snowe than alerted the police which led to the arrest of Kamara. In Police Custody, Kamara told FrontPageAfrica in an interview that he does not regret his action and promised to continue or commit suicide if he is free from police custody. Kamara said: I have gone to all the friends even Edwin Snowe who knows me personally for help, I have written letters to several individuals in and out of government appealing for help and I am tired. I am a former statesman in the Liberia National Transitional Government (LNTG) where I served as a lawmaker for Lofa County to see me involve with such act my brother you should know now that there is no way out. Every Liberian needs a Job my brother look at me I have four living children and I am starving should I be buried as it was done to former Justice Minister Jenkins Scott? I tell President Sirleaf that I will not die like Scott if I can get job and I am released from here I will hang myself, says Kamara. He said, prior to his current status as an impersonator he worked during the tenure of the National Transitional Legislature as a lawmaker. On his qualification, Kamara says he worked as a security officer, served in the Armed Forces of Liberia; explaining that it depends on the type of job, noting I need a job just for me and my family to survive. As a man without Job, how will I feed my family? Ah my brother so because the former army was dissolved so every one that was associated with the army should die? I prefer to do this than to steal we have people stealing millions of dollars in government and nothing is being done about it, so to impersonate I dont regret it at all he added. Kamara says his children will not be happy to hear that but will feel better than to hear that their father has gone to steal or armed rob others. He called on President Sirleaf to make real her promises made around the world at international events that she is providing jobs

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NEWS EXTRA

CHANGING GILRS STORY


Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa Names 2014 Scholarship recipients
Al-Varney Rogers alrogers2008@gmail.com

ewon Bleede, 35 a mother of two and a high school graduate sits home idly hoping that one day she will have an opportunity to continue her education. Surprisingly for Sewon in 2013 the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa selected her as one of the recipients of academic [2013-2014] scholarship. With smiles, Bleede says Since I graduated from high school I have been sitting home. I sat for years during which time I had my two children. Im 35 years right now and I just got a scholarship. She says the scholarship has given her the opportunity to realize her dream adding that she is currently enrolled at the STAZ College of Technology. Well I want to be a computer engineer and I hope to achieve this dream, Bleede said. According to Bleede her selection for the scholarship was a surprise explaining that she does not know Leymah Gbowee prior to getting the scholarship. I do not know her [Leymah Gbowee] I just got to know her when I got on her scholarship and thats the wonderful thing about it. She is not related to any of us here; shes from Bong County, shes a Kpelleh woman and Im from way Grand Kru, Bleede continues. Bleede thanked Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa for allowing them [scholarship recipients] to explore their potential. She called on well-meaning Liberians to follow the good example of Madam Gbowee by providing opportunities that improve the livelihood of young people. Sewon Bleede was among several young ladies announced as recipients of the 2014 scholarship at the Gbowee Peace Foundation 2nd Gala dinner and Fundraiser held at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion in Monrovia. At the program the Founder and president of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa, Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee recommitted herself to the fight for providing quality education for girls and the underprivileged. Gbowee outlined the Children Fund and the president Fellows programs at the Foundation impact on the lives of ordinary Liberians. Gbowee said, the Children Fund is intended to give emergency grant to students who are in the middle of their final exam and are thrown out of school. We are hoping our children Fund can grow and turn into something different. A young lady who has been going to the University of Liberia had three semesters to end and school fees at the U.L is USD 80 and she had been sitting two years because she cannot get USD 240 to return to school, she should have been here tonight but she felt sick. She will be the first recipient of that grant to finish her education at the University of Liberia, Gbowee added. Gbowee continues This evening sister Barbara met me and mentioned two of her students, senior in nursing final semester cannot find money to pay their fees; Monday morning Sister Barbara you will receive your check for their tuition. Since Madam Gbowee won the Nobel peace prize in 2011 jointly along with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Temaku Kamah, she has used that platform to tell Liberians and African stories to the world which is yielding results by the support her foundation receives to help improve particularly the lives of girls by providing quality education for them [girls]. At the Gala Dinner about eight promising young ladies were called up as recipients of the Foundation international scholarship and ex-combatant children were also giving local scholarships to pursue their secondary education. Gbowee narrated her personal experience with ex-combatants while serving as social worker years back. According to Gbowee, amongst the Ex-combatants children, one of the children has a special place in her [Gbowee] heart. 1999 I used to work with Ex-combatants one of them used to be in a wheel chair both legs amputated Christian Johnson and he had this girl friend called T-girl. One day T-girl told me that she does not want Senegalese that was how Johnson was called. Gbowee said, in a short time Johnson got T-girl impregnated adding that one day a group of combatants went into her office and said that T-girl has given birth. They named the baby Fofair, those of you who know the Ivorian saying see kee Fofair meaning what for you shall see your face, Gbowee said. Gbowee said, for years she has thought about Fofair and her mother adding that her team at the Foundation made it possible for the little girl to be a part of the Gala dinner. Tonight Fofair is here and as part of the President Fellow Im going to grant Fofair a scholarship from where she is now until she finishes High School, Gbowee said. As part of her effort to improve education, Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee revealed plans to construct a technical school for girls and the blue print was presented at the Dinner.

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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

REPUBLIC OF LIBERIA
Ministry of Finance P. O. Box 9013 Broad & Mechlin Streets 1000 Monrovia 10 Liberia

EXPRESSION OF INTEREST
VALUATION OF MOUNT NIMBA MINNING The Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Finance has ii. Market appropriated funds in the FY13/14 National Budget and intends to apply iii. Assets part of this to payments under the contract for Consultancy Services for Valuation of Mount Nimba Mining Project. The complete valuation of the project will also include calculations based upon either one or combinations of the following valuation models including but not limited to: Background a) Cash Flow/ Net Present Values , b) Comparable Transactions, In 2005, the Government of Liberia (GOL) entered into a Mineral c) Cash Flow Multiples/ Comparable P/Es and Development Agreement (MDA) with ArcelorMittal (AML) for the d) IRR re-development of Mount Nimba at Tokadeh, Nimba County. The Agreement has been amended twice: First in 2006 and then in 2013. The The Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Finance now invites project is a joint venture between the Government of Liberia (30%) and eligible Firms to indicate their interest in providing the services. It is AML (70%) with the corresponding initial capital amounts of $15 and proposed that the valuation exercise will take not more than 90 days $35 million respectively. to complete with a written report presented to the Government of Liberia. Interested Firms must provide information indicating that they When the original feasibility was conducted, it was estimated that the are qualified to perform the services (brochures, description of similar re-development of the mine would cost approximately US$900 million. assignments, experience in similar conditions, availability of appropriate In 2011, AML completed new feasibility study that puts the estimated skills among staff, past performance history, etc.) project cost to US$2. 1 billion with the project divided into 2 phases: Phase 1 which is still ongoing involves the shipping of direct ship ore The Expression of Interest should also include at a minimum the cost, (DSO) with iron (Fe) content around 58%. Phase 2 which is expected to description of the methodology to be employed, the CVs of the Team start in 2015 will involve the shipping of palletized concentrate. Members, proposed timeframe, if a differs from the required time as set forth in the Terms of Reference, brochures, description of similar Currently, AML is producing and shipping nearly 4 MT pa of DSO. By assignments, experience in similar conditions, availability of appropriate 2015, the project is expected to be shipping approximately 15 MT pa. skills among staff, past performance history, etc. Based on the financial model, the companys ramped up operations were slated for years 2010 through 2015 at which time, the shipment of DSO A consultancy firm will be selected in accordance with the procedures would cease. set out in the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission Act, of the Republic of Liberia. Only shortlisted Firms will be sent the Request As the project aggressively moves to phase 2 based upon the in initial for Proposals. projected financial model, AML has indicated the need for increased financing through the injection of capital by its shareholders. The Interested Firms may obtain further information at the address below Government of Liberia in an attempt to meet its financial obligations from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM GMT at the Procurement Unit, 3rd Floor as a minority shareholder, needs to hire an internationally recognized Room 045, Ministry of Finance, Broad & Mechlin Streets, Monrovia, and competent third party to work with a competent local entity in Liberia. undertaking a quick valuation of the project in order to provide both a book and fair market value of its equity stake in AML as at December Expressions of interest must be delivered to the address below by 2:00 31, 2012. Accordingly, the GOL will use the valuation as a basis for the PM on or before February 14, 2014. determination raising capital to finance its position. Scope Attn. William J. Hagba Accordingly, the Government of Liberia is seeking a company that will Director of Procurement perform, among other things, the following tasks: 3rd Floor Room 045 Ministry of Finance 1. Analysis of mines financial statements, cash flows and projections P. O. Box 9013 2. Review of projected expenditures (capitalized VS. expensed) Broad & Mechlin Streets 3. Analysis of supply, demand and future price for iron ore, along 1000 Monrovia 10 Liberia with transportation costs Tel: +231886563518/0880753568 4. Review and confirm existing resource information to determine/ confirm: i. Extent of reserve and resources (Rule 7,43-101 and/ or JORC) ii. Ability to expand reserves Signed: ________________________________________ iii. The level of economic ore extraction Procurement Director iv. Mine plan 5. Explore and advise on strategic financing options for the GOLs equity position in the project base upon either one of the following Approved: _______________________________________ globally accepted methodologies: Deputy Minister for Administration i. Income
For the Provision of

Tuesday, February 4, 2014


Zandi Shabalala and Tiisetso Motsoeneng JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) ormer South African president and antiapartheid hero Nelson Mandela left his $4.1 million estate to family members, the ruling African National Congress, former staff and several local schools, according to a reading of his will on Monday. The will was expected to set off another round of squabbling among members of his large and factious family over the Nobel Peace Prize laureate's financial legacy. Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke said he was not aware of any possible wrangle over the provisional 46-millionrand estate, although when the will was read to family earlier on Monday the mood was "charged with emotion." "I am not aware of any contest of any type and the will has been duly lodged and accepted," Moseneke said. Mandela's third wife, Graca Machel, is entitled to half the estate under South African marital law but could waive her claims and opt for specified assets that include properties in her native Mozambique. Machel has not made a decision on whether to weave her rights, Moseneke said. A photo of President Nelson Mandela will celebrate his 80th birthday on July 18, 1998. Events planne Some of the estate would be split between three trusts set up by Mandela, including a family trust designed to provide for his more than 30 children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Each of the Mandela children and some of his grand-children received $300,000. His upscale Johannesburg house, where he spent most of his life after

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IN BRIEF AUTOPSY SET FOR ACTOR PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN

MANDELAS $US4M WILL


Fallen, Former South Africa President Leaves Estate to Family, Staff, ANC
fortune with 50,000 rand each. "It really makes me happy. I didn't think Tata was thinking of leaving something for me," said Mandela's personal chef Xoliswa Ndoyiya, referring to Mandela using the Xhosa word for father. Mandela, who died in December at the age of 95, left an estate that also included a modest dwelling in his rural Eastern Cape home province and royalties from book sales, including his autobiography, "Long Walk to Freedom". More visibly, his legacy includes a potent political and moral brand that some of his grandchildren and greatgrandchildren have already used to market everything from clothing to reality TV. Some of his grandchildren have started a line of caps and sweatshirts that feature his being freed from apartheid jails, would be home to his deceased son Makgatho's children. The ANC, which was Mandela's political home, could receive a portion of his royalties from books and other commercial outlets using his name and image. Mandela staff, including his long-time personal assistant Zelda Le Grange, also shared in the image under the brand "Long Walk to Freedom". Two of his U.S.-based granddaughters starred in a reality television show called "Being Mandela". Such aggressive marketing as well as reports of fighting among family members over Mandela's money - have fuelled the impression in South Africa that some of the family members have exploited their world famous relative.

New York (AFP) n autopsy on the body of Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was to take place in New York on Monday, a day after he was found dead in his Manhattan apartment of a suspected heroin overdose. The sudden death of the 46-yearold, hailed as the finest character actor of his generation, has shocked Hollywood. He was discovered with a syringe lodged in his arm and surrounded by envelopes of what appears to have been heroin. The alarm was reportedly raised when Hoffman failed to turn up on Sunday to collect his three children from their mother, who called a friend to go and check on him. Police say his death seems to have been the result of an overdose but refused to release further details until the New York medical examiner's office conducts the autopsy. Hoffman mesmerized filmgoers with his portrayal of some of the most repellent and yet electrifying characters of the silver screen.

STUDENT INJURED AFTER IPHONE BURSTS INTO

UN DELEGATION EYES MALI PEACEKEEPING CHALLENGE UP CLOSE

FLAMES IN PANTS POCKET

Bamako (AFP) year after French troops sent Islamic militants scattering in Mali, a UN Security Council delegation is in the African country to weigh the challenges faced by the undermanned, African-led peacekeeping mission there. Gerard Araud, France's top representative on the Security Council and the head of the delegation, told reporters after arrival late Saturday in the capital Bamako that the delegation was to visit through to Monday, "with the aim of backing stabilisation in the country and action".. Majuro (Marshall Islands) (AFP) - A Mexican castaway who says he survived more than a year drifting at sea pleaded on Sunday to be taken home as he was picked

up from the remote Pacific island where he had washed ashore. "I want to get back to Mexico," the castaway, who identified himself as Jose Ivan, told interpreter Magui Vaca as he was about to board a Marshall Islands patrol vessel to be taken from Ebon Atoll to the capital Majuro for a medical examination. "I feel bad," he told Vaca of his physical and mental state. "I am so far away. I don't know where I am or what happened." An emaciated Jose Ivan was found last Thursday clad only in ragged underpants, when his 24-foot fibreglass boat with propellerless engines floated on to the reef at Ebon Atoll, the southernmost cluster of coral islands in the Marshalls.

13-year-old student from Maine suffered first and second degree burns after the iPhone she was carrying in her pants pocket caught on fire, school officials said. The eighth grader was in class at Kennebunk Middle School when she heard a pop and smoke began to billow from her pants, school principal Jeff Rodman told ABC affiliate WMTW-TV in Portland. Maine. Two classmates rushed to the student's aid, while another went outside to alert school staff and bring a fire blanket and extinguisher. As classmates were helping the girl out of her pants, the iPhone fell out of a pocket. The girl was taken to Southern Maine Medical Center in Biddeford where she was treated for burns and later released. Fire officials are investigating the incident and praised the student for remembering to "stop, drop and roll." Explosions and fires caused by Apple products are relatively rare, but incidents in the past have mostly been the result of the devices' lithium ion batteries overheating. In 2011 an iPhone 4 exploded mid-flight on an Australian Airline, and before that, the European Union launched a 2009 investigation after multiple instances of iPhones and iPod Touches exploding or catching fire midflight were reported in the U.K., Holland, France and Sweden.

Page 14 | Frontpage

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

ensational LPRC Oilers returned to winning ways in continuation of the Liberia Football Association (LFA) national league on February 2. Oilers lost 1-2 to NPA Anchors on January 29 but struggled to beat Jubilee FC 1-0 at the Unification Town sports pitch in Margibi County with George Kerkula scoring the winner. Red Lions and Mighty Blue Angels drew 1-1 in the second game. Invincible Eleven (IE), LISCR FC, Barrack Young Controllers (BYC) and Monrovia Club Breweries (MCB) were in the waiting room to replace Oilers. Keitrace FC beat Ganta Black Stars 3-2 at the at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium (ATS) in Monrovia. IE made it two wins from two matches with a 2-0 victory over NPA Anchors in game two. Elijah Clark put IE ahead in the 31st minute with a placement after he received a true pass from teammate Sam Jolo. Stephen Seameh could have leveled things but his magnificent shot was saved by goalkeeper and captain Peter Segbee. NPA desperately sought for an equalizer but they were neutralized by a well-marshaled defence led by defender Benjamin Nyanforh. Back from recess, Lahai Sackie combined skills and pace when he disorganized NPA defence but blasted the ball over the crossbar with only goalkeeper Segbee at his mercy Clark secured all three points with a fine art work and should have taken the match ball home with a hat-trick but the Yellow Boys were guilty of a host of woeful missed chances. Second half substitute Watala Moore was another tormentorin-chief in the midfield with an assist in Clarks second goal.

Oilers, Breweries and IE secure vital wins in LFA first division national league
Danesius Marteh, danesius.marteh@frontpageafricaonline.com & A. Macaulay Sombai, sombai121@gmail.com
four days by shocking 10 men LISCR 2-0 at the D. Tweh sports pitch in New Kru Town, which is popularly known as Bilbao. Despite missing the services of Savannah Nimely and Raymond Jean Makoun Fansieh due to burial of their father and uncle, Benjamin Sackor and Murphy Dorley compounded LISCRs misery after Dominic Golafaly was red-carded in the second half. Oilers, who last won the league in 2005, jointly lead the table with Breweries on 28 points from 16 matches. BYC are in third place, one point behind joint leaders Oilers and Breweries while IE occupy fourth place on the 12-team table with 26 points. Line-ups IE: 4-Perry Jimmy (20-Momo Sally), 5-Roland Dahn, 8-James Teah, 10-Elijah Clark, 13Sam Jodoe, 14-Lahai Sackie (21-Watala Moore 70), 15-Benjamin Nyanforh, 16-Peter Segbee, 26-Joseph Hinneh, 27Bob Zeo and 29-Sholee Quiah. Unused substitutes: 7-David Kollie, 19-Lansan Siafa and 22-Joseph Sam. NPA: 3-Alfred Jackson, 4-Johbn Lebbie (7-Thierry Tebbs 80), 5-Julius Nah, 6-Augustine Skiwda, 8-Kontee Symthe, 10-Stephen Seameh, 12-Olu Karyea, 14-Jimmy Jaylue, 18-Sorsor Joemah. Unused substitutes: 1-Tom Nimely, 9-Bill Sheriff, 11-Sheriff Ayouba, 15-Adama McCauley and 17-Matthew Dede.

CAT AND RAT RACE?

Sport

And a frustrated NPA head coach Jerry Anderson put his defeat down to some poor finishes. My players pressurized their opponents but we failed to find the back of the net. We could have also played in our half because it looked like our opponents were defending, he said. IE head coach Papa Kamara believes the three points put them back into the title race. We are preparing for our next encounter with Jubilee. We respect them but we are sure of winning that match in other to better position ourselves in the league. I am pleased to say thank you to my players for their handiwork

which has led us to victory today and I hope they do their best in our remaining matches, he added. Commotion marred the end of the BYC versus Watanga FC match on at the ATS with the police support union (PSU) called to restore calm. A man believed to be a Watanga supporter jumped onto the playing pitch to attack referee Christopher Nylander after he did not blow for what appeared to be a foul against Watanga but blew for a rather different challenge by Watanga on BYCs Trokon Myers. In the process of recording the yellow card, fans ran unto the

pitch and ricked Nylander in an apparent protest to the decision. He hit back to protect himself in the absence of security but more fans ran onto the field. Watanga winger Abel Boimah, who said he tried to protect the referee when he moved closer to him as the fans approached, was hit by Nylander who may have thought Boimah was coming to attack him. The fans invaded the pitch for more than eight minutes before police deputy director Abraham Kromah came to the rescue. The match resumed after the arrival of a truck load of PSU officers who cleared the playing

pitch but Boimah was red-carded for the incident between him and Nylander just before the restart And BYC scored two goals within 12 minutes and 60 seconds after the restart when Sosa Garel found the curtain raiser from the penalty spot. Leon Powell Quamie leveled things at a tense ATS but Tuku Nah sealed the win by baptizing the onrushing goalkeeper James Galley after his men wrongly set an offside trap. Liberia international Isaac Pupos presence in BYC midfield didnt scare Watanga, who were guilty of poor finishes. Elsewhere, Breweries also made it two wins from two matches in

UNDER APPRECIATED: BASSA PLAYERS UNHAPPY OVER SALARY ISSUES


ALPHA DAFFAE SENKPENI, BUCHANAN
the BSA denied the allegation. Insiders say players had to be pacified to play Sundays (February 2) friendly with Senior Professionals, FC in Buchanan as the players still expressed concerns over their balance compensations. Player Lucretius Victor told FPA in a telephone interview that the BSA has not told them the exact time they will received the balance of their compensation. According to him, many of the players are highly frustrated over the manner in which things are unfolding. In recent months, the Grand Bassa County administration has complained about the lack of funds due to the Ministry of Finance regulations in disbursing County Development Funds (CDF). It is unclear whether the county is relying on the CDF to pay the player, since the adminstration has opted for the denial and taciturn approach over the matter. Senator Nyonblee KangarLawrence described the situation as misrepresentation and misunderstanding and said the county administration and the caucus is still committed to keeping the promises they made to the teams. She said the caucus has rewards for all the various disciplines. The football team will be rewarded with US$10,000; basketball team, US$4,000, track and field and other disciplines will receive US$1000 each. Thats the gift we are going to give them besides the compensation and bonuses and we hope to do more to be able to maintain this team that has done so well, said Sen. Kangar-Lawrence in an interview. Already, everybody has been asking questions about the county plans to maintain these teams, especially the football team but with these concerns by the players it seems uncertain. Other prominent Bassonians have obliged to help sustained the players by providing the necessary support. LPRC Managing Director, T. Nelson Williams said Bassa can win the county meet for the next five years if the team is kept together and players are taken good care of. We make sure that those that want to go to school are given scholarships, those that want employment, we find job for them and those that have certain needs that we can take care of we do and keep the team in an environment that they will not worry about

hat could had been a damnation of all the efforts in making Saturdays illustrious county meet victory celebration momentous eluded the county administration as players of the county teams contemplated boycotting the program. Sources revealed to FrontPage Africa that the players were reportedly disappointed with the manner in which the balance of their compensation were been handled by the authorities. According to our source, the

action was initiated by the football team and other disciplines were considering the same move. One of the players identity withheld- said they were been convince by the authorities to attend the program after US$100.00 was paid to each footballer, and US$75.00 to each player of the other disciplines. The source further said they were assured by the authorities that their balance compensation and bonuses will be paid later. When contacted by FPA, Bassa Sports Association (BSA)

president, Arthur Jimmy acknowledged that there was a problem with the players salary issue before the program but said it was easily sorted out. The situation has been brought under control 100%; the players presence at the program is evidence that everything is fine. Looking at the situation, theres no qualm so everything is fine, Jimmy said. Another source said the county administration was pointing fingers at the BSA, alleging that it was authorities at the BSA that were in-sighting the players. But

personal things in the family, Mr. Williams told FPA after Saturdays program. The Movement for Progress Change Political leader, Simon Freeman also assured that he is willing to work with the county caucus to help keep the team in tight for the next couple of years. We will raised money and try to keep the team together. Some of us want to give them scholarships and some want to give the players jobs and other things, Mr. Freeman said. Meanwhile on Sunday in continuation of the celebration, Grand Bassa County played to a one all draw against Senior Professional, FC at the Doris Williams Stadium in Buchanan. The match well attended by Bassa football fanatics who are still savoring their county meet success, saw former Lone Star midfield maestro, Kelvin Sengbwe opened the curtain whistle as early as the 5th minute. But Ronson Gees 61st minute goal cancelled Kelvins opener. The match saw no more goals as both sides equally attack freely in the latter stage of the game.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Sport

Frontpage

Page 15

BALL DON'T LIE Shawn Marion wants


increased age limits for the NBA, and uncapped salaries because baseball does it

SPORT BRIEF

Buchanan, Grand Bassa County By virtue of the level of collaboration and coordination that existed amongst us as members of the Bassa legislative caucus, with God above and the support from the county administration and all of our citizens, our elders. Distinguish pe ople of Grand Bassa County, it is now our humble and singular pleasure to on behalf of the Bassa Legislative caucus, present these trophies over to the peace loving people of Grand Bassa County.... May God bless us, Buchanan District Representative, Gabriel Smith shouted in extreme excitement, as he lifted the two glittering gold-coated trophies in the air, leaving the ovation of the crowd to summed it all up. Earlier, hundreds of Bassonians and well wishers jam parked the under-construction Doris Williams Sports Stadium in Buchanan to attend the official County Meet victory celebration program. People from all walks of life were inspired by the events theme, 2 Trophies, 1 Goal: Bassa First. The message was clearly about unity and reconciliation, moreover; the dancing, singing and the attractive traditional and comedian customs showcased by some locals were all side attractions to keep the event colorful in its self. Grand Bassa County indeed has longed to celebrate County Meet success for more than 23 years, but at the celebration the message inferred from many speeches or comments delved into the prospect of keeping the ultimate goal-unity- an achievable priority. Popular politicians like Simon Freeman of the Movement for Progressive Change, Israel Akinsanya of Liberty Party, Law makers of the 53rd National legislature including Eugene Fallah Kparkar, Matenokay Tingban, Acarious Gray amongst other, sat in the open along with members of the Bassa Legislative Caucus and local county officials. Fortunately, the weather created a decent atmosphere for such an occasion. Concerns over the realization of unity at the level of the county leadership seems to

County Meet Trophies, A New Beginning for Bassa


ALPHA DAFFAE SENKPENI, BUCHANAN

S SYMBOL OF UNITY:

be an issue even before the program, but the felicitous mood amongst members of the same leadership seemed commendable as they chatted and share thoughts about the success. Dressed in a sportive outfit, T. Nelson Williams, Managing Director of Liberia Petroleum Refinery Cooperation (LPRC) was brief in mentioning the names of individuals and institutions that supported the event when he toke the stage. After he left the podium, he told a couple of journalists that the county success in the 2013/2014 National County Meet has changed the political environment in the county. I think for the first time, we saw members from at least five different political parties coming together to plan this event. People from the Muslim and Christian faiths, the gender balance were there, said Mr. Williams who was also the National Planning Committee Chairman for the event. 2011 Presidential aspirant, Simon Freeman saw the occasion as an opportunity for Bassonians to assemble despite whatever political divides. It was in the meeting (planning meeting for the program) I saw the county legislative caucus and people

from different parties and even myself contributing for a cause, Mr. Freeman said smiling as the speakers loudly interrupted him. He continued, We all worked together to realized what you see here today. So, obviously it tells you that certain stimulants can be the cause for certain people to do certain things in spite of whatever, he smiled and later answered couple of other questions and walked away. Some of the speakers kept mentioning that the trophies serve as a catalyst for stimulating practical reconciliation amongst the leadership and the people of the county but an FPA interview with vocal Liberty Party lawmaker who dressed differently - former rather than sportive - from almost all of his collogues on Saturday afternoon, stressed the essentiality of scrutinizing the level of euphoria amongst the leadership after the celebration is long over. If you look at the form and manner in which this tournament was handled by the leadership of Grand Bassa County, we collaborated, we were unify in one direction but I know the sporting drama on the field of play and after the field of play is the issue, but how best can we maintain

this victory so that we can speak with one mind, Hon. Brown asked. Not expecting a response, he continued, Not only speaking with one mind when our boys are on the field playing, but its just a matter of us making sure that after this process these trophies will bring us together to do things in unison, he concluded. As Hon. Brown attracted the attention of a fraction of the crowd with his energetic voice, meanwhile, many applauded Bassa Sports Association (BSA) president; Arthur Jimmy lifted one of the trophies, prompting a loud applause in response from the crowd. He told FPA, Im hoping that todays assembly will be able to create a condition for unification among the Bassa people. Interestingly and as a matter of concern, two prominent politicians were indisposed and much was not said about their absence unlike few reporters who inquired. Liberty Party political leader, Charles Brumskin and ProTemp, Gbehzongar Findleys presence could had probably change the environment or served as an epoch of the countys victory chronology. The question of whether the county sporting success could minimize the feud between the

pair is still unanswered. Critics described the program as poorly organized, holding to the fact that the honorees -the players dressed in their well tailored navel blue coats had to tussle for chairs brought in late and on many occasions security officers had to push back the crowd that seemed fascinated by happenings on the stage and were eager to get a glimpse of the action. Crowd control could have been a problem if the crowd were not already excited about the event and start being unruly, David Barlingar asserted when police maneuvered to push back the crowd from around the stage. Despite the situation at the stadium, the joys of celebrating county meet success superseded all of the factors that could have been detrimental because of poor planning. The Planning Committee Chairman puts the expenditure at US$80,000 but said some donations were made in kind. On the paved Tubman Streets were scenes of reveling as entertainment centers sold out their drinks to mostly guests from Monrovia who jumped at the chance to celebrate the countys triumph not knowing the impact their celebration on the political sanity of their beloved Grand Bassa.

hawn Marion is a smart and unique player. Everything about the Dallas Mavericks forward screams unorthodoxy, even if the league is quite familiar with the presence of the fourtime All-Star, one that was drafted into the NBA out of UNLV in 1999. Nearly 15 years removed from draft night, Marion truly still does not have a typical position. He capably defends all comers despite his age, hes worked on both rebuilding clubs, middling teams, championship contenders, and champions, and Marion is regarded as about as savvy as they come amongst the NBAs active players. He may have swung and missed on this bad boy, though. Recently asked what changes hed like to see under newlyminted NBA commissioner Adam Silver, Marion decided to call back to that bastion of financial security and leagueminded goodwill : Major League Baseball. Marion would love to see the NBA throw out the salary cap under Silver, letting teams choose to pay what they want regardless of penalty, or the gulf between large and small markets. From Brad Townshend at the Dallas Morning News: I could see no cap and everybody doing what you want to do, he said. Baseball does it. If you want to go out and spend $200 million on your team (payroll), go ahead and do it. It cant guarantee that youre going to win, but why not? If youve got the money to do it, why not? There shouldnt be a cutoff on what people want to spend for their teams, but there should be a minimum that have to spend, so you definitely put a good product on the floor. Dearest Shawn, baseball does it should never be a reason for just about anything sports-related. I love the game, but MLB has undergone decades worth of labor strife, strikes, salary disparities, drug woes, collusion, and out and out free market chaos. Bad ownership and front office machinations are part of the reason why, but the (decreasing, but still significant) gulf between the haves and have-nots in

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CAT
AND RAT RACE?
OILERS, BREWERIES AND IE SECURE VITAL WINS IN LFA FIRST DIVISION NATIONAL LEAGUE

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