“There’s No Plan Convention” -NAPTANOL Informs Education Stakeholders

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The leadership of the National PTA Network of Liberia (NAPTANOL), has called on education stakeholders across the country and the public in general not to give credence to information circulating in various street corners about a planned National PTA Convention expected to kick off today, May 22, 2024 in Bong County. Accordingly, the planned convention expected to run from May 22-25, 2024, has been described as false, misleading and none and void Convention by NAPTANOL. Making the disclosure recently in Monrovia, the National PTA President of Liberia, J. Mason Saweler, indicated that the Board of Incorporators as well as the National Executive Committee of the National PTA Network of Liberia have not endorsed any convention due to the lack of functional PTA leadership structures in all of the counties, except Bong County, something he said is a requirement for Convention according to the National PTA By-laws and Constitution in Article 12 under General Assembly Convention and Functions.  He named Edwin T. Sherman, suspended Vice President for Administration/National PTA, Rev. Frederick Gbatu, Sr. of the Effort Baptist Church School impersonating as Chairman on Ways and Means / Finance Officer using his personal phone number 0880403911 to receive all monies in the name of National PTA, while Michael Kharim, who is an employee of PTA Department, Ministry of Education, is also impersonating as Interim Chairman for the National PTA Network.   According to him, article 6 section 2.5.1 under functions of the National President, states that the president of the National PTA Network of Liberia shall preside over all executive meetings and General Assembly Convention, something that needs to be address before convention is held.   Accordingly, article 9 Section 1a: Election procedure shall be: An Ad Hoc election commission shall be constituted by the Association’s National Executive Committee (NEC) as an independent body to handle elections, adding “the commission shall have the power to formulate electoral guidelines to ensure a level-playing field for all interested and qualified candidates, to include timetable and minimum financial attachments in conformity with this constitution.” While Section 2 talks about the qualifications for elected officers: states that one must have served or be a current local PTA Chairperson of the National PTA for at least two terms, a county coordinator, be in good financial standing, have good moral conduct, and as well served in a local leadership positions with proven administrative experience.    “Article 12, section 1 (General Assembly Convention and Functions) shall be: The General Assembly (G.A) shall be the supreme authority and the highest decision making of the Association, second only to the Board of Advisors, as regards approving of decisions and resolution of the Association. The General Assembly shall meet after every four (4) years in November. The venue shall be rotational in order of regional arrangement,” he said.  He noted that if they were to go to election this year, then said process should have been in November and not May, stressing that the constitution was amended and notarized in 2022 to accommodate some of their officials who did not have the academic requirements.   “Article 12, section 3 shall be: To review and adapt policies emanating from the National Executive Committee (NEC) before being forwarded to the Board of Advisors for final approval. To review, endorse or reject reports of the National Executive Committee, to include audit, financial status, programs and project, to review and adapt the Network’s annual budget for onward submission to the Board of Advisors,” he said.

He continued: “We understand that those who are planning the illegal convention are using Effort Baptist School in Paynesville and Cooper Parish School on the Capitol Bye-Pass as their meeting points to carry on their clandestine collection of money from schools and government officials under the pretense of the National PTA Network of Liberia, and these individuals have forged the phone numbers of officials on the Network’s Letterhead, using it to solicit money from stakeholders. The National PTA Network President asserted that the suspended officials have written Vice President Jeremiah Kpang Koung, Speaker Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa, Sen. Nathaniel McGill, Sen. Johnny Kpehe, Rep. Thomas Romeo Quioh, Rep. J. Melvin Cole and other government officials requesting for budgetary support for their convention. He said with evidences in our possession, the group secretly remove the budget component of their letters so that we cannot expose how much money they were requesting for.  Meanwhile, the National Executive Committee of the National PTA Network of Liberia leadership is encouraging the general public and stakeholders in education not to transact business with the following individuals in the name of the National PTA Network.  “In conclusion, the National Executive Committee of the National PTA Network has not endorsed any convention to be held in 2024 because the National PRA Network is still in the process of constituting and training county PTA leadership structures,” he said.

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