Darius Dillon’s Estranged Politics In The Liberian Senate

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MONTSERRADO COUNTY’S SENATOR, Darius Dillon, earned the votes of the majority of the Montserrado electorate on the platform of taking light to the Liberian Senate. Enumerated in the platform was his resolve to disclose the full salaries and benefits of senators, a subject of public controversy and disapproval with speculation that senators were simply taking home too much. Dillon’s platform landed on fertile soil, as the Liberian Senate and House of Representatives have long been criticized in the public for such matters as operating for a protracted period of time without any audit and, to some extent, accountability.

DILLON’S OPPOSITION APPROACH earned him both the votes of his constituents and an estranged position in the Senate from the very beginning. His taking light to the Senate presented him to his colleagues in the august body as a perceived outsider building his opposition credibility at their expense. It appeared to them that Dillon’s blueprint for credibility often involved painting them as corrupt; hence, from the day he was inducted in the Senate he was threatened with expulsion.

THE EXPULSION THREAT has reached a focal position with Senator Dillon’s recent statement on his colleagues in regard to the passage of the recast budget. From estrangement in the Senate, the moral voiced Dillon has begun to suffer criticism in the public, with some Liberians accusing him of insulting his colleagues in the Senate. Liberians have begun to frown on the Montserrado County Senator, observing that his attitude is only intended to damage the image of the senators. Dillon is now being called on to refrain from making statements that are intended to put senators and the citizens at loggerhead, which is not in the interest of peace and unity, as referring to his colleagues as corrupt officials and spineless is not a disgrace to only the senators but the entire nation, with regard to the outside world. Liberians are going further by calling on opposition political parties and the ruling party to advise their senators and representatives in the National Legislature.

HOWEVER, THE STRENGTH of Dillon, the Collaborating Political Parties, is of another position, accusing the Senate of harassing Dillon with the intention of silencing him. The National Secretary General of the CPP, Aloysius Toe, has expressed serious disappointment over the decision of the Liberian Senate to investigate Senator Darius Dillon for making statements believed to be critical of the Senate. “The CPP acknowledges the bravery of Senator Dillon to expose bribery in the Senate, which understandably caused embarrassment to Senators, but done in the best national interest of Liberia…Any attempt by the Senate to muzzle Dillon’s right to free speech as guaranteed by the Liberian Constitution is an attack on our democracy… Shame on the Senate for this reckless vendetta against Dillon, and shame on us the Liberian people if we allow this to happen, and do nothing… The current investigation is intended to silence Dillon’s advocacy for the interest of the Liberian people, force him into censorship, and eventually remove him from the Senate… This is a planned and determined effort to silence critical and independent voices in the Senate, and eventually remove them. Dillon, being the loudest opposition voice in the Senate, is the primary target… Chie, a member of the ruling party, whose failure to exercise leadership and ensure the independence of the Senate has led to seemingly corruption-induced actions by the Senate, including the un-Constitutional removal of an Associate Justice, and the surreptitious confirmation of many questionable Executive appointees, often under allegations of bribery… He is the one who should be investigated and removed from the Senate. We call on all well-meaning Liberians to stand against this injustice and ensure that Senator Dillon remains in the Senate to continue fighting for you.” This uncompromised support for the Montserrado County Senator says his approach to the Senate may remain unchanged, his estrangement consequential and the threat of expulsion continued.

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