River Cess County — An important bridge linking Neezuin Community, Doewein Clan in Central River Cess District to other parts of the county is a "death trap," residents told The Heritage. "Government through the county leadership should immediately stop the usage of this bridge," said Shardrick G.B. Gboeh, President of the River Cess County Youth for Development (YODEV).
"This is completely a death trap here. It can break and any car can fall in the river and in the end there will be loss of innocent lives." He emphasized. The concerned citizens, including a large number of women, children and the elderly, raised the alarm during an exclusive interview with this paper on Tuesday, August 8, 2012.
The bridge was constructed by the infamous Oriental Timber Company (OTC) in the late 1990s during the regime of imprisoned Liberian President, Charles G. Taylor. According to the citizens, the bridge was "temporarily" constructed with logs to create quick and easy access for the timber company to transport its products.
The citizens said the logs are now rotting and that the bridge may collapse at anytime. The bridge in question is situated just over the Doedey River. It connects three concession sites namely Mandra-EJ and J Logging Company, Mandra-Liberia Trees and Trading Company (LTTC) and the International Consultant Capitals (ICC).
"This bridge is very dangerous to our lives. It can break anytime unexpectedly, and destroy our lives," said Ma Martha, a resident of the community. She furthered: "The lives of our citizens are at risk is nothing at all is done about this." Mr. Gboeh, the youth leader, who is also a resident of a Zian Clan, a neighbor of Doedey, said the bridge impedes major business activities in the county.
A VIEW OF FEARED BRIDGE THAT CONNECTS NEEZUIN COMMUNITY TO OTHER PARTS OF RIVERCESS COUNTY
This writer, who toured with Green Advocates International in the county, also observed that the bridge indeed poses a great threat to people commuting from one end of the county to the other, and traveling from River Cess County to Sinoe County or vice versa. Green Advocates International is an internationally acclaimed environmental and human rights organization operating in the country.
Rivercess County is in the south-central portion of Liberia, and one of the 15 counties that comprise the first-level of administrative division in the nation. River County has eight districts with Cesstos City serving as the capital city. As of the 2008 Census, it had a population of 71,509.
The lives of more than 70,000 people are in great danger if the government through the relevant authority does not heed the cry of the people of River Cess County.