The Inquirer (Monrovia)

19 August 2014

Liberia: West Pointers Want Ebola Center Back... Leaders Vow to Identify, Arrest Looters

Photo: Unicef
Special material was developed to support Liberian community outreach activities to stop the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.

Following the recent ransacking and looting of the newly established quarantine center in the congested community of West Point, the leadership of the community has appealed to the Government of Liberia for the reestablishment of the center.

On Saturday, some residents of the densely populated slum community of West Point rejected government's move to establish a quarantine center in the community. As a result of fear, many of the residents went on the rampage and looted the facilities thus taking away mattresses with blood-stained beddings, rice, and generator among others.

Appearing on a local radio talk show yesterday in Monrovia, the leadership of West Point condemned the looting of the center by some unscrupulous individuals residing in the township describing them as mere criminals who want nothing good in the community.

Madam Nelly Cooper and another leader identified as Mullah apologized to President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf for the ugly act carried out by some of the residents and appealed that the quarantine center be erected in West Point to save the entire community from contracting the deadly Ebola virus. They are at the same time calling for the deployment of the state security in the Township of West Point to ensure that anyone involved in such unwholesome act be arrested and prosecuted.

They said the establishment of the Ebola center is a blessing for the community something that must be embraced by all residents of West Point. Madam Cooper said those who carried on the looting do not even constitute one percent of the population of West Point and as such, government must listen to them (leaders) and reestablish the center.

The leadership of West Point has at the same time, vowed to identify, arrest and turn over for prosecution community dwellers who were involved in looting the center last Saturday. The leadership of the community also said they have retrieved some of the stolen items including generators that were taken away from the quarantine center. The leadership said items retrieved will be turned over to the committee that was set up by the leadership of the community.

Meanwhile, many callers who called on the talk show yesterday called on the Government of Liberia to quarantine the Township of West Point Community following the looters of the center recently. The callers said if the community is not quarantined, the Ebola virus will rapidly spread not only in the community but the entire city and that some of those who looted the Ebola center are now leaving the community and roaming around in other communities.

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