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Fact Check: Did Dr. Amos Sawyer Overstay 12 years at the Governance Commission

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Claim: Amos Sawyer overstayed 12 years at the Governance Commission even though his tenure expired

Verdict: True but, Dr. Amos Sawyer spent eight years serving as chairman of the Governance Commission but prior to his appointment, he was serving the Governance Reform Commission that was transformed to the Governance Commission.

Full Text: When HOTT FM radio talk show host Daniel Rogers appeared on the show, Monday morning, he claimed that Dr. Amos Sawyer stayed 12 years at the Governance Commission even though his tenure has expired.

Dr. Sawyer is the former Head of the Interim Government of National Unity (IGNU) of Liberia, He served as Interim President of Liberia from November 22, 1990, to March 7, 1994).

He was also the former Chairman of the Panel of Eminent Persons, African Peer Review Mechanism (African Union) from 2010 to 2014.

Verification: According to the Executive Mansion website, Dr. Sawyer was appointed on August 5, 2008, and in 2013 he was reappointed to the commission.

Prior to the 2008 appointment, he then served as chairman of the Governance Reform Commission now Governance Commission.

The act establishing the Governance Commission in section 5.4.1 states; “Tenure” states that the commission shall serve a term of four  years and may be re-appointed for an additional term of 4-years; provided that in no instance shall a commissioner serve more than two terms , whether successive or separate . Service by the commissioners shall conform to the terms of reference of the appointments, not inconsistent with the provision of this act.

Conclusion: The claim that Dr. Sawyer stayed 12 years at the Governance Commission is partly true; however, it is safe to say that before the Governance Commission was established in 2007, it was previously called the Governance Reform Commission which existed from 2003 to 2005.

The previous years from 2006 to 2008 were years of setting up after President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf resigned from the Governance Reform Commission to contest the election in 2005.

Dr. Sawyer officially took over as Chairman of the Governance Commission in 2009 and left in 2017.

Counting the years prior to those years of setting up when it was never a full Commission and the years of being Chairman will add to 12 years but only eight years were under the Governance Commission.

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