Government ministries, agencies to appear on controversial Firestone concession agreement
17 February 2005
Source: The Analyst


Several government ministries and agencies will on Friday appear before the joint committees of the Transitional Legislative Assembly (NTLA) to answer questions relative to the controversial concession agreement signed between the National Transitional Government of Liberia (NTGL) and Firestone.

The government ministries and agencies according to the Chairman of the NTLA Committee on Concession & Investment Thomas Nimely is to quiz the senior government officials how and why the agreement was signed and why they think it must be ratified by the NTLA.

Those to appear before the NTLA joint committees tomorrow are Finance Minister Lusiene Kamara, Justice Minister Kabinah Janneh, The National Investment Commission, Chairman Roosevelt Quiah, and Labour Minister Lavala Supuwood.

Mr. Nimely who is also Representative of the National Patriotic Party (NPP) yesterday told journalists that the two committees will jointly examine the agreement and subsequently make
recommendations to the Plenary which is the highest decision making body of that august body for ratification of said agreement.

Representatives from the Firestone Rubber Plantation Company as well as legal experts will also be in attendance, Nimely stressed.

The public hearing, he said, was necessary and timely because it is intended to afford the ordinary Liberians the opportunity to have their inputs into the exercise.

He used the occasion to admonished his fellow citizens especially stakeholders in the rubber industry to utilize the Friday opportunity by attending the discussions.

Speaking further, he stressed that the public hearing is also intended to seek public view because majority of the people are major stakeholders and custodians of the resources.

It can be recalled in this month the NTGL and the Management of Firestone Rubber Plantation signed a renew concession contract for additional thirty-two (32) years.

Since the signing of the agreement, the Bryant- led NTGL has being condemned in many quarters for what they described as a hasty decision.

They argued that the NTGL does not have the legal rights to sign a document that is beyond its statutory obligations and lifespan.