"Backlash Against UL Students' Protest: Defenders Rally Behind Newly Appointed Inspector-General of Mines and Energy"

Mar 25, 2024 - 09:34
Mar 25, 2024 - 09:35
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"Backlash Against UL Students' Protest: Defenders Rally Behind Newly Appointed Inspector-General of Mines and Energy"

Monrovia-Several public administrators, political pundits, student leaders and youth groupings have slammed the staged protest action by a few students of the University of Liberia against the newly appointed Inspector-General of Mines and Energy, Agatius B. Coker.

On March 12, 2024, President Joseph Nyuma Boakai appointed Mr. Coker, Vice Chair for Auxiliaries of the Liberty Party, who holds Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology with emphasis in Public Administration from the African Methodist Episcopal University.

But since the appointment of the youthful Inspector-General of Mines and Energy at the Ministry of Mines and Energy by the Liberian Leader, a few UL students believed to be in a proxy war, have been bitter at Mr. Coker thus leading a protest action at the compound of the Ministry.

The group of approximately ten (10) members is calling on President Boakai to withdraw the appointment of Mr. Agatius B. Coker, stressing that the presidential appointee neither has a degree in Civil Engineering, Geology nor does he have a technical knowledge of the job.

But sharply reacting to the claims of the aggrieved students through a crossed-view sampling by our reporter, some public administrators condemned the protest action staged at the premises of the MME, emphasizing that the protesters lack the basic understanding of their argument.

The administrators maintained that the position is strictly an administrative post that anyone, including Mr. Coker can hold and perform beyond expectation.

iting some of the terms of reference of the IG of Mines and Energy, the political pundits, former student leaders and the administrators noted that the Inspector-General of Mines and Energy oversees all Inspectors of the Ministry.

They added that the IG also enforces mining legislations and regulations, handles mineral records and scrap licenses identification and verification and fosters stakeholder relationship and management as well as handles disputes and conflict resolutions and performance management.

Providing more indebt education and details on the functions of the Inspector-General, the joint forces in defense of Mr. Agatius B. Coker indicated that the IG ensures that all mining and mining related laws and regulations are carried out on the field in compliance with the Kimberley Process and that mining violators are identified and turned over to the proper authorities for prosecution.

According to them, it is an added advantage for the IG to obtain a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Mining Engineering, Geosciences of Mineral Economics from a recognized university of professional institution but there is no provision that prevents anyone who holds a degree in different discipline as in the case of Mr. Coker from serving the post.

The joint forces intimated that as enshrined under the qualifications for the position of Inspector-General, that said person must have at least three (3) years relevant work experience in senior management position in the private or public sector organization, Mr. Coker has over ten (10) years’ experience working in the private with his private company.

They stressed that the IG, Mr. Coker has a strong ability to work under pressure and with no supervision, proven planning and organizing skills, strong ability to network, noting that he is fair and firm on administrative decisions with excellent negotiation skill as enshrined under ‘Other Requirements’ for the post.

According to them, the IG has the necessary connections both locally and internationally, integrity and they believe he can properly serve in the capacity with strong principles, resilient character and commitment in line with the President's ARREST Agenda.

Meanwhile, the joint group in defense of Mr. Agatius B. Coker has called on President Boakai to not bow to any malicious, unsubstantiated and politically motivated protest action against the presidential appointee, including the Inspector-General.

They further expressed explicit confidence in the leadership, intrapersonal relationship and result oriented abilities of the appointee to deliver, promising their overwhelming support to the IG to properly serve his people, the country and the young generation.

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Daniel Theo Cole Daniel Theophilus Cole is a Senior Reporter at Kool 91.9 FM/TV/Knewsonline. Cole has a keen interest in Human Interest, Political, Economy, and Agricultural Stories. His passion for journalism extends beyond self-interest. Cell#0776762186 Email: [email protected]