MONROVIA, Montserrado â€“ After Grand Bassaâ€™s Senator Nyonblee Karngar-Lawrence drew attention to President George Weahâ€™s appointment and commissioning of the ambassador to the U.S. without the Senateâ€™s approval, the Senate has ordered its Committee on Foreign Affairs to probe Foreign Affairs Minister Gbehzohngar Findley on the presidentâ€™s apparent disregard for the constitution.
The Senate took its action during the first sitting of the second session.
George Patten was nominated by President George Weah on December 29, 2018, to serve as ambassador to the U.S. He was commissioned one day after without a confirmation hearing by the Senate.
At the time of his appointment and commissioning, the legislature had officially closed its first session and was on its annual constituent break.
In her communication, Lawrence said the constitution was clear on how officials should assume public office.
â€œArticle 54 says [the] president nominates, and with the consent of the Senate, appoints, and commissions ministers, ambassadors, and consuls, among other officials of government. This is a violation of our constitution,â€ she wrote.
The motion for the decision to cite the foreign minister was put forth by Grand Kruâ€™s Senator Peter Coleman.
â€œI move that the foreign affairs minister, Gbehzohngar Findley, appear before the Senateâ€™s Committee on Foreign Affairs to give a reason for the alleged appointment and commissioning of Liberiaâ€™s ambassador to the United States of America and report findings to plenary in one week,â€ Coleman motioned.
According to the Senateâ€™s communication read by the secretary of the Senate, Nanborlor Singbeh, Findley will appear before the Senateâ€™s plenary next Tuesday to explain the alleged commissioning of George Patten as ambassador to the U.S.
Montserradoâ€™s 10th district representation, Yekeh Kolubah, had recently written the U.S. ambassador asking the U.S. government to reject the newly commissioned Liberian ambassador to the U.S., noting that his commissioning was unconstitutional.
â€œWe are calling on the government of the United States not to accept Mr. George W. Pattern as Liberiaâ€™s Ambassador to America. He has not been confirmed by the Senate,â€ Kolubah noted in his communication.
Featured photo by Zeze Ballah