Double Trouble For Snowe

By Helroz Zorleh

Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

Posted July 19, 2006


Barely few days after his apology to members of the House of Representatives by Speaker Edwin M. Snowe for his unilateral letter written to the Taiwanese Embassy in The Gambia for the restoration of diplomatic ties between Liberia and Taiwan, another call has been made by the Senate for the Speaker to face probe.

According to a letter written to the President Pro –Tempore of the Liberian Senate, Isaac Nyenabo by Senator Daniel F. Naatehn Sr., dated 13 July 2006, which copy is in the possession of The FORUM, Speaker Snowe is to face a full scale investigation that could serve as a restrictive precedent for the would-be violators
According to the letter, the Speaker violated Article 57 of the constitution which empowers only the President to conduct Foreign Service and not the Speaker.

In view of the solemnity of constitutional violation and in order that a repeat be avoided, the letter states: “Let there be a full scale investigation into this breach of constitution which has brought disrepute to the 52nd Legislature and accompany with the necessary action taken against the Speaker aimed at remedying this overzealous behavior by him.”

Another Senator who also spoke to The FORUM at the Capitol said, “Speaker Snowe’s issue needs urgent attention in that full investigation be conducted because his [Speaker] action has brought the entire 52nd Legislature into political disrepute.”

Meanwhile, in an effort to speed up the process to restore diplomatic relations, the Taiwanese Government, through its Embassy near Banjul, The Gambia, reportedly remitted the amount of seventy-five thousand U.S dollars to Speaker Snowe.

The money in question which was said not to be part of the US$11M promised the Speaker and others was reportedly brought into the country and delivered to the Speaker by an official of the Liberian Embassy in The Gambia, after a letter written to the Taiwanese Foreign Minister was reportedly signed by Mr. Snowe.

A source close to the arrangements told The FORUM that the Speaker wanted to sideline the mediator by either allowing the signature of someone from his office or another person to affix his signature to the letter, but was rejected by the Liberian Embassy official upon investigation.

After affixing his official signature on the letter, The FORUM is told that it was then that the seventy-five thousand United States dollars was delivered.

According to the source, in order to seek protection in case of any eventuality, the Speaker is said to have bribed some of his colleagues whom he believed were “radicals” with the amount ranging from five hundred to two thousand US dollars.

Since the backfire of the deal, Speaker Snowe is also said to have been dishing out huge cash for public relations purposes to lay the issue to rest.

On April 28, 2006, the Speaker wrote Ambassador Patrick Chang of the Embassy of the Republic of China on Taiwan with residence in The Gambia that, “ We are pleased to inform you that the Legislature through this office would like to initiate discussions exploring possible legislations aimed at strengthening friendly relations between our two democratic countries.”

The letter further states, “We have therefore designated Hon. George Mulbah Representative of Bong County and Mr. Ambrose Gbormie, Assistant Minister of Afro-Asian Affairs at the Foreign Ministry to travel to Banjul, The Gambia to liaise with your good offices regarding travel arrangements and other details of the trip.”

The Speaker has since apologized to his legislative colleagues for his unilateral action taken to have written the Taiwanese Embassy in The Gambia concerning diplomatic ties with Liberia without their acquiescence.

Investigation continues.

© 2006: This article is copyrighted by the Forum newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved. Forum can reached at: