By Mark N. Mengonfia- [email protected] 

Wednesday, May 3, 2023, social media (Facebook) had claims from different bloggers and even journalists that the Speaker Bhofal Chambers, House of Representatives, was sharing money in Maryland.

Laso Kromah wrote “ Wow So surprise !!!!! Speaker of the house of representatives sharing money like this? 


Also, Fedel Saydee, a Liberian journalist with 12 thousand followers on Facebook wrote as I interpret.

“You all have been asking where the money they printed went and why we are still receiving mutilated money?

Here are some! It is in a basket and on the table in Maryland County. Ellen people did the same, and Weah people did it, we are not sure after Weah whether others won’t do it…….”

Although Saydee has taken down the post, a screenshot which was taken 28 minutes after he posted attracted many.

Screenshot of the Journalist’s post which he took down afterwards

 Image of the Speaker turning over the money to the women has been trending since it was first posted on May 3, 2023.

Midfield Deco also wrote, “ Liberia’s Speaker of the House buying votes in Maryland County.” 

Who is Speaker Chambers?

 Speaker Chambers is the first among equals of 73 Representatives, a body that is clothed with the responsibilities of Lawmaking, Oversight, and Representation.

He has represented Maryland Maryland County District Two since 2006. He became the Speaker of that August body in January 2018 till present. The Speaker of the House of Representatives operated on the budget of 1,485, 164 for 2020-2021 and 2,094,425 in 2022. 

Speaker’s Budget on the Ministry of Finance website

Verification: The Stage Media Liberia  (TSM) contacted Robert Haynes, Director of Press, House of Representatives, to verify the claims.

Haynes in response to TSM-Liberia’s inquiry said the Speaker was responding to a request made by some market women in Maryland.

According to Haynes, the Speaker has gone to empower the group of women who are operating a village savings loan.

He added that the Speaker provided the sum of three hundred thousand Liberian Dollars (L$ 300, 000. 00) to the women’s group. 

The full text of his reply via messenger reads, “ The Speaker, upon request of local market women in Hospital camp, Maryland County for their village saving loan and empowerment, had gone to empower the women with three hundred thousand Liberian Dollars to start or grow their businesses.”

The Director’s clarification that the money was a kind gesture from Chambers to the women is understandable that a man who has worked for those many years, the above-mentioned amount is years, it is a drop in the ocean for such an individual who even has an annual budget to operate.

However, the claim that it is some of the new banknotes that were printed is true. 

All of the money in the basket and on the table are brand-new banknotes that have never been used.

It is also safe to say that those women were paid to play the political game as posters bearing the image of the Speaker  were seen on the walls and in the hands of another person not very far from the Chambers in the background.

Conclusion: TSM-Liberia can not independently verify if the money was three hundred thousand Liberian Dollars as claimed by Haynes. We can not also verify the claim that the money was given to market women for business purposes so, in this case, we say unverified.  

This story was produced with the Center for Journalism Innovation and Development (CJID) support.


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