The Independent Voluntary Committee working to resolve the dispute within the United Bong County Associations in the Americas (UBCAA) has officially released its findings .
The committee was chair by Dr. Emmanuel K. Urey-Yarkpawolo.
The report implicated the board of the Associations with several recommendations.
Presenting the Final Report to the General Members of the UBCAA over the weekend at a major press conference in Monrovia, Dr. John Flomo, Director General of the Liberia Agricultural Commodity Regulatory Authority and a Member of the Committee said the implication of the board is based on the Association board’s “involvement” in the dispute.
“On August 26, 2021, the Board of the UBCAA made a public statement quoting article VIII, Amendment # 27 of the Constitution that gives them the power to handle disputes within the UBCAA and asked the public not to cooperate with our Committee. Even though the Board was right that it has the litigation powers and is responsible to settle disputes within the UBCAA, the problem is that as our investigation has demonstrated, the Board is clearly implicated with the current electoral dispute within the UBCAA. Based on their involvement in the dispute, they have lost their independence to handle the current dispute within the UBCAA”, Dr. Flomo disclosed .
The dispute in the association started a few months ago, but was not noticed until Dr. Emmanuel K. Urey-Yarkpawolo attended the UBCAA convention in Minnesota from July 16-18, 2021. During the early morning of of the convention, Mr. Christian Richardson, the National Treasurer of the UBCAA, while making the financial report, informed the meeting participants that there was a parallel convention taking place in Pennsylvania and requested that the convention not conduct an election. Mr. Richardson was told by the National President, Mr. Samuel Sondah, that he should focus on his financial report. This raised a red-flag right from the onset of the Business Meeting.
During the election, the Election Commission (EC) indicated that there was no quorum as the Constitution of the UBCAA mandates. The Election Commission was dismissed, an ad hoc Election Commission instituted. The Ad hoc EC conducted the election in which Mr. Caimon Joe Kollie and his team were all elected on white ballots.
On the same day, there was information that other Bong County citizens were gathering in Philadelphia, hosting a parallel convention and conducting elections.
This resulted in two separate UBCAAs being established, with each group claiming to be the legitimate leaders of the UBCAA based on Constitutional provisions.
Based on the Independent committee investigation, they came up with a four count resolution.
“That the two elections be cancelled and Mr. Caimon Kollie and Mr. George Toto should cease to exercise constitutional powers, That an interim leadership (both Board Members and Executive members) be appointed with consensus of the UBCAA chapter leaders to stir the affairs of the UBCAA for one year.
The committee recommended that if recommendation #2 is accepted , the acting leadership should conduct free, fair and transparent elections, not more than 12 months as of the date of the establishment of the interim leadership.
The committee final counts however disclosed that “If counts 1-3 are not possible, the UBCAA membership through the chapter leadership and or eminent citizens from Bong County should convene a meeting to find alternative solution(s),” Dr. Flomo disclosed.
Below are members of the committee:
Mr. J. Flomo Matthew, Former President of the UBCAA and a Member of the Committee
Rev. Clifford Hooke, Pastor, International Christian Fellowship Gwinnett Ministries and a Member of the Committee
Dr. Emmanuel K. Urey-Yarkpawolo, Founder and Executive Director, One Life Liberia and Chairman of the Committee
Dr. John Flomo, Director General of the Liberia Agricultural Commodity Regulatory Authority and a Member of the Committee.