House Fines Acting Justice Minister Tuan L$4,999
The plenary of the House of Representatives has fined the Acting Justice Minister and Acting Solicitor General of Liberia, Nyanantii Tuan, L$4,999 (Four thousand, nine hundred and ninety-nine Liberian dollars) as contempt charge to be paid in government’s revenue on Friday, March 3, 2023, and with a receipt to be presented to the chief clerk’s office on Monday, March 6, 2023.
The decision to have the Acting Justice Minister held in contempt and fined was reached on Thursday, March 2, 2023 during the House’s 14th day sitting of the 6th session of the House of Representatives of 54th Legislature. The decision was based on the refusal of Minister Tuan to appear last Tuesday, February 28, 2023, before the House’s plenary after he had been written by the chief clerk to appear. Plenary cited the Minister to address issues relating to the collection of the road fund from the petroleum Importers and how payment agreement was entered into. The Acting Minister appeared to justify why he should not be held in contempt. He was asked to come along with his lawyer but declined to use that right.
Minister Tuan’s reasons for not appearing on last Tuesday were unjustifiable and, therefore, he was charged with contempt. He told the House that he could not appear because he was invited to the Liberian Senate on the same day but failed to communicate with the House on this engagement with the Senate.
Petroleum importers were invited to appear before the plenary along with the National Road Fund (NRF), LPRC and the Justice Minister. Petroleum Importers who are indebted to the government appeared in full plenary to give their payment plan.
The plenary concluded to allow the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) to work along with the importers in deriving the payment plan. LRA was asked to write an apology letter to plenary, to be published in newspapers, after admitting that the LRA takes the responsibility of collecting the funds, and not Justice Ministry. The LRA had earlier told plenary that Justice Ministry was responsible for the collection of the road fund.