The Informer (Monrovia)

Liberia: Mary Broh's Saga - Another Perspectives

editorial

The coming into national prominence of people like Mary Broh is not a new phenomenon in Liberian history. In every decade throughout Liberia's existence as a nation, there had always emerged people like Acting Monrovia City Mayor, Mary Broh and Montserrado County Superintendent, Grace Kpaan who demonstrate serious disregard for the rule of law. This is because for one reason or the other, such people feel that they are above the law or because they wield the support of the corridors of power.

This kind of attitude evolved over the years. It is sometimes due to the traditional respect that Liberians reserve for women. There are few countries in the world, especially in Africa where women are held in such high esteem than Liberia. It was thus no mistake that Liberia became the first country in Africa to vote into office a woman. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf made history by becoming the first democratically elected President of Liberia.

Should the Mary Broh and Grace Kpaan saga be construed as respect for the rule of law versus the culture of impunity that is deeply entrenched in Liberia's post conflict scenario? There is a school that views that the scenario is part of the chain of embarrassments that loyalists of the President have been bringing to Madam Sirleaf.

The issue is that there are many who feel that Mary Broh is doing extremely well, if one is to evaluate her report card as acting mayor of a city that had been in the throes of dirt and stink after a prolonged civil war, there should be reason to applaud her many initiatives.

On the other hands, there are those who hold the view that Mary Broh deserves the support of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf whenever public opinion is manipulated against her, as was the case few months ago when some members of the Legislature opted for her suspension from exercising her functions as acting city mayor and the president had to intervene for her to stay considering her positive qualities.

The reality however, is that she is a trouble-shooter who has incurred the wrath and distrust of a cross-section of the general public. Indeed the acting city mayor deserves a reciprocal support from the President in times of trouble or distress.

The Police rescuing Mary Broh from mob action and the Supreme Court issuing an inhibition on the House from carrying out arrest warrant on Mary Broh, on the grounds that the House cannot be an arbitrator and judge of cases, is another example of the high esteem in which Mary Broh is held, not only by the President, but among other government functionaries.

We applaud the prompt action taken by the Police in rescuing the Acting city mayor from mob action. This is because although the controversy over Mary Broh abounds, there are still some Liberians who laud her efforts to make Monrovia a clean city. Indeed, the derogatory references proffered on her such as "general broke house" are mostly from those people that are uneasy with her tough stances when it comes to sustaining legality. We urge the general public to exercise calm and restraint in dealing with "General Broh".

What the public must not forget is that despite the glaring weaknesses, the MCC under Mary Broh has immensely contributed to making Monrovia a clean and environmentally friendly city, through her tough actions such as breaking down dilapidated and awkward structures that can be of health hazards.

Moreover, the breaking of houses and dilapidated structures is often done in conjunction with the Law courts and other stakeholders. In evaluating the acting city mayor's weak points, we must not at the same time turn blind eyes to her many laudable achievements.

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