By: Stephen G. Fellajuah
The uncertainty of whether Senator Abraham Darius Dillon ever received or rejected the second tranche of $30,000 allotted to each lawmaker under the line of legislative engagement in the national budget was laid to rest yesterday, Monday, August 2, 2021, when Senator Darius Dillon’s Montserrado County Development Council, a group overseeing projects being undertaken by the Senator acknowledged and confirmed that the Senator’s office did receive and turned over to the County as was directed by the senator.
The information about the latest development on the second tranche that has generated further condemnation from the public, the council said far before the first tranche was given to the Senator, he had already told the people of Montserrado County in particular and the Liberian people in general of the allotment made in the national budget which goes under the line of legislative engagement and that said money will be judiciously used for the intended purpose for the county.
“Consistent with his commitment, Sen. Dillon informed his constituents and the public about the money before receiving the first 15,000 United States Dollars”, a statement has said.
Reading the statement on behalf of the County, Jimmy George, Secretary General/Project Director of the Senator’s Development Council said knowing the current public health crisis faced by the country and the need for everyone to rally efforts in beating this disease (Coronavirus) out of Liberia, the Senator immediately made a donation of 7,500.00USD to the Montserrado County Health Team, the amount was gladly received and accepted by the Health Team at the time.
George also said the senator made donation of oxygen tanks and other medical supplies to ELWA Hospital and other health facilities including the Oniyima Health Center formerly known as the Island Clinic.
The Council said when they were all enthusiastic about being part of efforts to combat the pandemic after the Senator made the monetary donation to the county health team, they were taken aback when the government through the Minister of Health surprisingly returned the Senator’s donation of $7,500 while at the same time accepting money from other lawmakers and even begging other nationals and organizations for financial and material assistance.
“This has been the saddest time in this fight against the COVID-19. Even when people are dying, this government continues to play politics, the statement pointed out”.
The statement noted that when the news of the second tranche of the legislative engagement money was made available to Lawmakers, the Council met with Sen. Dillon and advised him to take the money and turn it over to be use by the people of Montserrado County on the coronavirus fight through the Council which the Senator accepted.
“We cannot allow this government or anybody to keep playing politics on something that can help save lives. Our appeal was granted and Sen. Dillon instructed his Office Staff to sign for the Check, endorse the same with firmed instructions that the amount be turned over to the Council.
“We are pleased to announce that we have the money and will be using majority of said amount towards the fight against COVID-19 with a small portion used for other interventions. This is no time for politics especially during a public health emergency”, the statement said.
The statement furthered: “Also, the misleading information being spread by calculated design that the Senator has not been remitting the 3,000USD from his monthly salary to the Council is not true; but we understand the politics and those behind the politics.”
The statement went on to say that in the last three months, the Council in an effort to work towards the dedication of the Rehabilitation Center promised by the Senator to help rehabilitate citizens suffering from mental health issues and drug addiction, met and decided that said amount be committed to finishing the works in addition to what Sen. Dillon and friends are providing towards the Rehabilitation Project. It added that the Council is very happy of effort contributed to the completion of the rehab center which the statement described as a worthy cause that will soon be officially dedicated.
“Few days from now this Council will be making donations to clinics/health facilities and reaching out to other needy organizations. The press and the public will be fully informed about these distributions and donations. Thanks for coming and thanks to Sen. Abe. Darius Dillon for allowing us to serve the people of Montserrado County”, Dillon’s County Council averred.