By: Eldred Wlemongar Thomas
More than fifty staffers of the Liberian Senate today staged a protest in demand of one month arrears.
According to a spokesperson of the aggrieved staffers, Sundesco Clarke, they are demanding sixty thousand United States dollars allegedly owed them by the Senate.
Mr. Clarke said their protest action was predicated upon a promise that they were to be settled after the Senate had a recent month extension with an assurance also from Pro-Tempe Jallah, but they are yet to receive what is due them for the one month extension.
He claimed instead, Pro-Temp Jallah threatened that their jobs were at stake because of the protest.
Mr. Clarke said the leadership of the Senate had promised to give seventy thousand United States dollars for workers from the central administration and staffers of various Senators.
Clarke said sixty thousand United States dollars was to be given to Staffers in general working with various Senators, while ten thousand United States dollars was meant for workers of the Central administration.
Article 83 (b) allows the President to request for an extension of Legislative business to enable the lawmakers deliberate on key national issues affecting the state and its citizens.
Our reporter who witnessed the incident said the aggrieved staffers blocked the entrance to the Pro-Tempe Armah Jallah’s office preventing him from entering.
Senate Pro-Tempe Jallah is said to have been locked up in the office of Vice President Joseph Boakai until session due to the situation, according to our reporter.
When asked about the claims made by the staffers, the spokesman of the Liberia Senate Jallawah Tonpo acknowledged that the Upper House made a commitment, but was quick to note it does not owe the workers.
Mr. Tonpo however noted the delay on the part of the Senate to fulfill said promise was due to delay in the passage of the national budget for fiscal year 2016/2017.
He said the Pro-Temp has instructed him to issued statement on the matter, while appealing to the aggrieved staffers to be patient as releasing of finance is a process.