24 December 2013

Liberia: 'Exodus' in EPS - Many Servicemen Either Resign or Depart for the U.S.

The Executive Protection Service (EPS) is reportedly experiencing a torrential chasm almost a year after it was metamorphosed from the Special Security Service (SSS) through an Act of the Legislature.

Security sources close to the presidential elite that confided in this paper said the chasm has reached an extent where many officers have either resigned or left the country without any prior notice to the authority. Over twenty officers have reportedly left the force already.

The mass exodus, as the sources termed it, is simply an expression of displeasure with the manner in which the elite presidential protection force is being run by the Othello Warrick-led administration.

According to the information, there is a growing discontent amongst members of the EPS over Mr. Warrick's style of operation, with claims that the EPS boss lacks the morale and professional knowhow to lead the force.

More besides, he is said to be running the entity on segregation.

Some of the departed officers alleged that their boss does not have the security experience to lead the force.

Another vertebrate of the reported exodus is also on account of alleged misapplication of training/scholarship offers, with claims that the EPS boss has developed the posture of considering people of social interest to him, instead of EPS officers for scholarship opportunities

"If you look at the scholarship section, it has been given to a girl who is said to be his friend. That is one Sonie Johnson at the Cuttington Graduate School," the source who declined to be quoted said.

Another thrust of the reported departure of many officers from the force is blamed on the questionable operationalization of funds allotted for the intelligent arm of the EPS.

The Intelligent arm of the EPS, according to the sources, is in the state of inactiveness, but funds are said to be running with no accounts of how the money is being used.

"Money is coming to the intelligence unit, but it is dormant. The money comes, but it is used and it is inactive," another one said.

All of these claims could not be independently verified as authorities from the organization including Director Warrick were indisposed up to press time.

Efforts to get words from the EPS boss did not materialize as he knowingly or unknowingly did not answer his phone.

The EPS has undergone tremendous transformations, besides being metamorphosed, this paper also learned.

Several officers have undergone trainings here and in other places since the EPS boss was called in by President Sirleaf to lead the organization as head.

With the exodus, some security analysts told this paper that it should be of concern to the government.

"This is very worrisome to this country. The president has to act before this gose out of hand. Do you know what it means for our security sector with well trained people closer to the presidency leaving?" one Richard Anderson said.

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