BTC Military Base Regains Status
By: C. Winnie Saywah
Posted October 10, 2003
With barely under a week for a new assembly to take over, the incumbent legislature has passed into law an act that observers believe, though belated, shall be greatly welcomed by the Liberian public.
Some three years since it passed into law an Act creating the premises of the then Barclay Training Center(BTC) as National Children’s Village, the Liberian Senate has passed a new Act restoring the BTC premises to its former status as a military barracks.
The new Act repealing the former that created the Children’s Village read; "The Act to repeal the Act authorizing the appropriation of a certain parcel of land in the City of Monrovia within Montserrado County for construction of a soldier barracks with respect to the purpose and to the change, the appellation of BTC and to establish the Liberian National Children’s Village is hereby repealed and the BTC is hereby restored.
"Section 2: that the repairs and restoration cost of structures destroyed and demolished by proprietors of the Children’s Village within the BTC shall be bome by the proprietors of the Children’s Village."
Briefing the legislative press after the day’s session, Grand Bassa Senator Thomas Woewiyu said some Acts passed by the 51st Legislature, particularly Executive Bills, were not done properly thus needed to be revisited in the interest of the nation and the people.
Senator Woewiyu disclosed that among several bills passed during Tuesday’s session, four were passed to repeal certain rights given to the executive branch. He explained that some provisions within the acts that they have had to repeal, did not pass through the legislature.
Speaking on the restoration of the BTC, Senator Woewiyu said, "if a building was broken, whoever the sponsor responsible will pay for its reconstruction."
When contacted, Sinoe County Senator Myrtle Gibson, who was the chief sponsor of the bill that created the Children’s Village Act, only said the contract was never genuine, adding, "the arrangement was not proper."
Senator Gibson explained that the Children Village project was never intended to be built where people are still residing.
Strangely, when contacted about the demolition of buildings that have so far been carried out for the project, Senator Gibson denied being aware of any structure being demolished for the project, adding "we did not demolish any building, we were mainly concerned about renovating and reconstructing the place for what we intended to do".
Meanwhile the Senators during their Tuesday’s session also passed an Act repealing that which gave 10 percent of all maritime funds to the Bureau of Maritime Affairs. The Act says 100 percent of all maritime funds generated be given to the government to take care of its expenditure.
Other Act repealing various statutory provisions mandating statutory appointment of the Board of Directors of public corporations and to simultaneously grant said power to the president of Liberia was also passed into law by the august body.