– Apologizes To Lawmakers, President, Others
By Reuben Sei Waylaun
After spending two nights in jail for allegedly disrespecting members of the House of Representatives, Deputy Information Minister for Public Affairs, Eugene Lamine Fahngon has succumbed by offering apology to members of the first branch of government, President George Manneh Weah and Liberians at large.
It can be recalled the tough talking Deputy MICAT boss was on Wednesday September 12, 2018 handcuffed, fined LRD4999.99 and declared ‘none-governmental material’ and subsequently jailed at the headquarters of the Liberia National Police for alleged gross disrespect to members of the House of Representatives.
Bomi County electoral district one Representative, Edwin Melvin Snowe alleged that Minister Fahngon insulted him following an incident with a staff of the lawmaker’s office, Kelvin D J Matadi who Minister Fahngon alleged of photographing him in a public glare while having his private life.
The audio recording concerning the alleged insults from Deputy Minister Fahngon to Representative Snowe was played in the overcrowded, but quiet joint Chambers of the National Legislature and Fahngon was loudly heard raining insults and calling his name in the recording.
But while taking the witness stand before the plenary of the House of Representatives to exonerate himself, Deputy Minister Fahngon refused to make any comment or apologize; saying he needs to talk to his lawyer first before any comments.
He evoked Article 21 (c) of the 1986 Liberia Constitution as his reliance.
Article 21 (c) of the Liberian Constitution says “Every person suspected or accused of committing a crime shall immediately upon arrest be informed in detail of the charges, of the right to remain silent and of the fact that any statement made could be used against him in a court of law. Such person shall be entitled to counsel at every stage of the investigation and shall have the right not to be interrogated except in the presence of counsel. Any admission or other statements made by the accused in the absence of such counsel shall be deemed inadmissible as evidence in a court of law.”
However, after spending two nights behind bars and experiencing the agony, the tough talking Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) staunch member succumbed by offering apology to members of the House of Representatives, the Liberian people and President George Manneh Weah for the embarrassment his actions had cost the state.
In a live video facebook broadcast on Friday evening following his return from jail, Minister Fahngon realized that he over reacted in a matter that was in the public glare.
“I will like to sincerely apologize to her excellency the vice president for action that brought her name that was totally unnecessary. To the Honorable National Legislature, I will never in my slightest imagination try to disrespect any member of the legislature or the body as a whole. To my mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, President George Manneh Weah, I am deeply sorry,” he said.
Minister Fahngon added: “the matter which brought us here today was rather unfortunate and sad because as a public official, it is not good to get involve into matters that will challenge our positions to serve our nation and people. With this, I am greatly sorry.”
He meanwhile assured the Liberian people that as a messenger of the Liberian Government, he will forever remain focus on his service to duty through the articulation of the pro poor agenda for prosperity and development.
“To the great people of Bomi County I know many of you are saddened by this unfortunate issue, but let me also extend to you my deepest apology, but let me also assure you that I will remain a proud son of Bomi County and I will remain a staunch contributor to the growth and development of our dear county. I am pleased to assure you my fellow compatriots that the CDC is a party where we see the greater good of country above our personal interest and CDC we believe in,” he added.
The Deputy Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT) boss recounted that the country has come a long way in consolidating great deeds and through the 171years the country has existed, he has not seen Liberia on irreversible path on national growth, peace and reconciliation as well as a strong will to rebuild the nation, a vision that rests on the shoulders of President George Manneh Weah.