Thursday, May 12, 2016

Liberia’s constitutional future: Religious and centralized?

In response to the failure of piecemeal reform proposals in an unsuccessful constitutional referendum in 2011, President Sirleaf-Johnson established a five-member Constitution Review Committee (CRC) in August 2012 tasked with conducting public consultations and preparing proposals for constitutional reform for submission to the President. Following the completion of nation-wide public consultations, the CRC organized a National Constitutional Conference, from 29 March to 3 April 2015, which brought together actors from across the nation. The Conference produced 25 proposals for consideration for constitutional reform. After carefully reviewing the CRC’s report with the 25 proposals, the President forwarded the proposals to parliament in August 2015 endorsing some of the proposals while suggesting that some others be addressed through policies and legislation. However, she rejected, inter alia, the “Christian State” proposal on grounds that it “could foment division amongst our people based on religious beliefs”. Read more...

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