MONROVIA – What now seems to be a proverbial albatross hanging on the neck of Senator Edwin Melvin Snowe is the Western Cluster deal that has placed the Bomi County lawmaker on the media front burner for all the wrong reasons, as Bomi citizens are speedily consolidating to raise 20,000 signatures aimed at petitioning the Liberian Senate to impeach their man for what they have termed as his willful and criminal connivance to mortgage the resources of the county while the people languish in poverty.
According to Bomi County Representative Aspirant Charles Brown who over the weekend addressed the press on behalf of the Concerned Citizens of Bomi County, the people are not going to rest until Snowe is booted out of the Senate.
“Snowe is a pretend criminal. Do you think he would negotiate to waive US$14M without personally benefiting a dime? It’s not possible. We moved in the county yesterday with close to 10,000 forms. We are soliciting signatures to impeach senator Edwin Melvin Snowe on the basis of negotiating an illegal contract with the Western Cluster to the people of Bomi. He is a lead negotiator that went for the Western Cluster that was owing the people of Bomi US$24M as corporate social responsibility.
“In his negotiation, Hon. Snowe singlehandedly decided to criminally, maliciously, intentionally to negotiate with Western Cluster to waive US$14 million. Why will Snowe lie under oath that he was the chief negotiator for the Western Cluster when it was Snowe who led the delegation along with the Minister of Mines and Energy to India? It was Snowe who waived US$14 to Western Cluster.
“Look at the issue of APM Terminals. Honorable Snowe was the lead campaigner in the House of Representatives for the passage of APM Terminals. Today, this is the young man who went on radio and said he regretted his action; that he regretted his signature on AMP Terminals.
“The issue is, if you look at the condition of the people of Bomi, it’s like we were dying. So, we thought that Honorable Snowe would have come to deliver the people of Bomi, but instead, he has come to sell the entire Bomi County. So, the people of Bomi are frustrated, disenchanted in the deals of Snowe. He is like a businessman. He is like a wicked man in a town who gives gifts. Of course it’s a trap.
So, looking at Hon. Snowe’s going to Bomi, this is why some of us as activists and young people who understand the language, the body politics of Bomi, have never one day supported Hon. Snowe in Bomi County because we knew who Hon. Snowe was. This man is not far from the suffering of the Liberian people. This is a man who championed the passage of the Farmington Hotel agreement into this country. For 25 years the Farmington, a revenue generation institution, will not pay taxes to the Government of Liberia.
“This is a man who is friends with the President who campaigned in 2017 against President Weah and told the people that if anyone voted for President Weah, war would come to Liberia. Today, this is the man who is parading the streets with President Weah. So, Hon. Snowe’s coming to Bomi at the time, these were some of the reasons why some of us never gave him our support because we know who Hon. Snowe was. This is a man who was booted out from the Speaker position on the basis of his Nicodemus deals when he tried to bring Taiwan One policy into Liberia when Madam Sirleaf was looking for China One Policy into Liberia.
“This is a man who went to Bomi and circumvented the law, on the basis of marrying one of the associate justices, which is the current Chief Justice on the bench of the Supreme Court. Hon. Snowe knew that there was no law that could guarantee him being a sitting representative for District #6, going to Bomi and registering to contest in another election. That was double registration under the law. He should have been prosecuted. That was a criminal intent; but because he had his wife on the Supreme Court bench, after he had gone to the Baptist Church to marry SieA-Nyene Yuoh for protection. So after the marriage and he succeeded in becoming senator of Bomi County, the marriage is languishing in limbo.
“But that’s not the issue. The issue here is that the citizens of Bomi are soliciting 20,000 signatures to impeach Hon. Snowe on the dubious deal of Western Cluster. As of last night, we started distributing the forms in accordance with names, clans, districts, past voter registration numbers. We put those people into buses and come to the Capitol Building and submit our impeachment petition to the Liberian Senate, and we will give them ultimatum of three weeks to act on our petition. If not, we are going to have a sit-in action here until Hon. Snowe is tried under the Constitution.
“As we speak, by Monday there will be a prohibition filed to halt the operations of Western Cluster. We want to follow the legal process. If the legal process cannot work, we will resort to the radical approach by stopping the trucks at Po River. No trucks leave the county with iron ore because it is complete health hazard. Our people are being contaminated with tuberculosis because of the trucking. Why would Hon. Snowe choose to negotiate a deal and set aside the MDA and take a Memorandum of Understanding that will supersede the MDA. Today, as we speak, the MOU does not provide anything for the people of Bomi. Look at what the MOU is telling you. Bomi is responsible to produce the iron ore from the mines passing through St. Paul Bridge; but that all of the roads should be patched. But from St. Paul Bridge to the Port, the roads should be paved.
“In the US$10M that the Western Cluster has remitted into Government account, Hon. Snowe is telling us that out of the US$5M that Bomi will be getting, only US$1.5 will be going to Bomi. US$3.5 will be going to Montserrado on the basis of pavement of the road from St. Paul Bridge to the Port. The MOU satanic; we condemn it in the strongest terms. So, we are calling on the people of Bomi, as they receive our forms, to impeach Hon. Snowe for bringing on that deadly deal called Western Cluster.
“Snowe is an opportunist. He used the vulnerability of the people of Bomi to ascend to where he is today. He used the people of Bomi. This is a Bassa man. I challenge him to go to Grand Bassa and see if he will win. The people of Bomi are peaceful people who accept anybody. They elected Snowe because their own sons and daughters failed them, so they saw Snowe as another alternative. So the Bomi people bringing Snowe from a Representative to a Senator was not a mistake. The people thought that Snowe was going to be there for the people of Bomi, not knowing Snowe was giving an eagle’s eye to the reserve iron ore that LMC left.
“Look at one of the deadliest things that Hon. Snowe did. The Western Cluster, through the Indian Government, provided five scholarships to the people of Bomi. In my mind, we expected Hon. Snowe to have gone and presented those five scholarships to the people of Bomi, but instead, Hon. Snowe recruited people from his office and pretended as if he is the one sponsoring those five students to India.
“This is a man who says he wants to be president of this country in 2029. Looking at his dubious deals. Snowe doesn’t mean well for President Weah. He should be careful with Snowe. If President Weah doesn’t keep Snowe far away from him, the Western Belt will not vote for President Weah. Snowe did not help to make Weah president. Those who did are being pushed aside for someone who fought against Weah presidency.
“Snowe lacks integrity. We are calling on the American government to place immediate sanctions on this young for his dubious deals in the Western Cluster activities in Bomi County. We are not going to rest. Snowe is a pretend criminal. Do you think he would negotiate to waive US$14M without personally benefitting a dime? It’s not possible,” lamented Representative aspirant Brown on behalf of the citizens of Bomi County.
It can be recalled that Senator Snowe recently distanced himself from the Western Cluster deal, noting that he was only seeking the best interest of Bomi County when he sought the acquiescence of the Bomi County Legislative Caucus to represent the people of Bomi when the Memorandum of Understanding was being coached.
But against the huge public backlash over what he saw as a complete misrepresentation of his involvement in bringing back Western Cluster to Liberia, Senator Snowe publicly washed his hands off the Western Cluster operations recently in Tubmanburg.
“When we started this Western Cluster thing, you asked me to represent the Caucus in ensuring that the company comes back and does its best for our people. From all indications, our people are not happy. I am advising you, Mr. Chairman, let the Caucus meet, let’s take the necessary action for our people to be protected. But going forward, the assignment that you gave me, as member of the Caucus, to represent the Caucus in these discussions, I hereby relinquish that assignment as from today. I don’t want to have anything to do with Western Cluster. Find somebody from the Caucus and the County to move forward with the Western Cluster situation.
“Moving forward, anything in the past, clarification, explanation that you want, I am prepared to give. But as of today’s date, I don’t want to have anything that has to do with Western Cluster. I have been called a criminal. My family is crying; my children are calling me. I am a human being. I am somebody’s son too. If what I did was wrong, I apologize to the people of Bomi County. But God is my judge, and I know my heart. Thank you. I am out of this whole process,” Snowe had said as he relinquished his assignment to Senator Morris Seytumah of Bomi County.