President Weah’s Special Review Committee Adopts Guidelines to Constitute Code of Conduct

Tuesday, 17th April 2018
Monrovia, Liberia: A nine-man Special Review Committee set up by President George Manneh Weah has agreed and adopted guidelines to constitute its Code of Conduct. The Code of Conduct is to enhance and ensure efficiency, integrity and transparency in the work of the committee as enshrined in the Presidential Authorization. The drafting of the Code of Conduct kick starts the activity of the committee.
 
The Committee is mandated to review all concessions, management and other agreements/contracts, currently in force in Liberia, executed by and between the Government of Liberia and concessionaires, managers, partners and investors; determine whether concession, management and other agreements/contracts currently in force in Liberia, executed by and between the Government of Liberia and concessionaires, managers, partners and investors meet the legal requirements of the laws of Liberia; determine whether the parties, Government of Liberia and the concessionaires, managers, partners and investors are in good standing, and current in their performance under the terms of the concession, management and other agreements/contracts signed; and if not, to propose remedies and recommendations to address the default; and examine and review proposed concession, management and other agreements/contracts, as may, from time to time, be referred by the Office of the President and make appropriate recommendations.
 
The Committee shall ensure that its work is carried out with mutual respect and tolerance of different viewpoints, and that all its decisions shall be made in the first instance by consensus, failing which a vote shall be taken. Where voting is inevitable, decision shall be on the basis of 2/3 of votes cast. 
 
Members of the Committee shall discharge or perform their assigned responsibilities with due competence, integrity and high ethical standard, respecting and upholding the rule of law. Each Committee member is expected, and hereby undertakes, to: attend meetings, and be punctual; prepare for all meetings; actively participate in all discussions and matters of the Committee; complete and submit all report(s)and/or assignment(s) on time; promptly notify other members of the Committee in case of his or her inability to attend meeting(s) or perform any assigned task; conduct himself/herself with high level of integrity;  and not allow his/her independence to be compromised by any person or circumstance.
 
The quorum for Committee’s meeting shall be on the basis of simple majority; provided that attendance shall be in person or through any other means whereby the member hears and is heard by every other participant. Members of the Committee shall be entitled to receive ONLY honorarium or other allowances as provided for in the approved budget of the Committee. Besides his or her approved honorarium as set forth above, no member shall solicit, accept, receive and/or use any other benefit given or promised by any other person in connection with the member’s performance of his or her duties. 
The Committee and every member hereof shall avoid any conflict of interest, actual or perceived, in the performance of its functions. A conflict of interest shall be deemed to have arisen if:
 
a. A Committee member or his relative, close friend or business associate has prior or present relationship or some pecuniary interest with the holder or operator of an agreement, contract or concession being or to be reviewed by the Committee.
b. A Committee member takes part in a Committee’s discussion of any agreement, contract or concession in which he/she will not be able to remain impartial or objective in furthering the mandate of the Committee vis-à-vis his/her personal interest or the interest of his/her client, relative, close friend or business associate.
c. A member of the Committee takes part in any discussions, review or recommendation concerning an agreement, contract or concession of an entity that he/she served or is serving as legal counsel, financial advisor or in any paid capacity;
d. A Committee member takes part in any discussions, review or recommendation concerning an agreement, contract or concession held or being operated by an entity that the Committee member or his law firm or business, relative, close friend or business associate had, has or appears to have some interest arising out of investment, employment, consultancy or any other relationship based on or contemplating pecuniary gain.
 
Upon the adoption of this Code of Conduct, each Committee member shall make a full written disclosure of actual, perceived and/or potential conflict of interest based on a list of agreements, contracts and concession submitted to the Committee by the Ministries, Agencies, Commissions, Public Corporations and State-owned Enterprises, as well as his/her knowledge of the scope of the Committee’s work. Besides the initial disclosure, the Committee shall implement a procedure whereby prior to the commencement of any discussion or review (including sharing the copies) of a given agreement, contract or concession, all members shall be required to disclose whether they are conflicted or not, relative to such particular agreement, contract or concession.
 
If a Committee member is conflicted (in respect of a matter to be discussed or an agreement to be reviewed), he or she shall promptly disclose such conflict to the Committee. The disclosure shall be made as soon as the member becomes aware of the conflict of interest, and in all cases before deliberation commences on the contract/agreement or the matter, as the case may be.
 
Upon disclosure of a conflict of interest, the Committee member shall recuse himself/herself or be recused from deliberations and decisions on the matter.
 
The determination of a conflict of interest shall primarily be made by each Committee member, but the Committee may on reasonable ground or information available, determine that the member is conflicted, and therefore have him or her recused (as if he or she has made the determination). 
 
A member of the Committee who is conflicted on a contract/agreement to be examined, shall not offer advice to the Committee on matter(s) relating to the said contract/agreement.
 
The Committee shall maintain a register of disclosed conflict of interest indicating when the conflict was disclosed.
 
All deliberations and decisions of the Committee shall be confidential save to the extent necessary to report to the appointing authority. Each member of the Committee shall have a continual responsibility to ensure that documents and information received in connection with his/her work on the Committee remains confidential and it is otherwise not disclosed or left to be accessed by any unauthorized person or non-member of the Committee, except as otherwise provided herein, the Committee shall speak through its Chairman or his designee. All public statements relative to the workings of the Committee shall be discussed and agreed to by the Committee. Except with the expressed consent of the Committee, no former member of the Committee shall:
 
a. make a public statement or make public or otherwise use any confidential knowledge or information gained as a consequence of the Committee’s work;
b. Retain documents or items earlier received in connection with their membership on the Committee.
All members of the Committee shall sign this Code of Conduct as evidence of their:
a. Consent;
b. Knowledge of its contents; and
c. Undertakings to abide by all of its provisions.
This Code of Conduct may be amended from time to time by the Committee.
Any member of the Committee who is found to have been in material breach of this Code of Conduct shall be reported to the Appointing Authority for appropriate sanctioning.
Members of the Committee are; 
 
Hon. Archie Bernard – Chairman
Cllr. T. Negbalee Warner – Vice Chairman
Hon. Charles R. G. Bright – Member
Cllr. David A. B. Jallah - Member
Cllr. Necular Y. Edwards - Member
Cllr. Bendu E. Clark - Member
Ms. Juah Nancy Cassell - Member
Cllr. Jallah A. Barbu - Member
Cllr. P. Teplah Reeves – Member
 
The document was done on March 18, 2018.