28 November 2017

Liberia: Alpha Fraternity, Soap Frustrated Over Rape Law Amendment

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity incorporated in collaboration with the Men of All Prayer Assembly or SOAP has express serious frustration over the recent decision by the Liberian senate to admend the Rape Law making it a billable offense.

The two organizations says the decision by the upper house of the Liberian Legislature to make Rape Law a billable crime is totally against the will of women and children who are mostly the victim of these crimes whenever they occur.

Addressing a news conference yesterday November, 27, 2017, at its head office on Randall Street in Monrovia, the President, and Chief Dean of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity incorporated Mr. T. Nelson Williams said the tow organization are extremely disappointed with the recent decision of the Liberian senate to make Rape Law a bailable offense.

According to Mr. Williams on October 3, 2017, the Liberian senate voted to amend the Rape Law, he says the senate took the decision base on a recommendation from the statutory committee on judiciary that the issue of Rape should be a baliable offense. The Alpha Fraternity president, who is also former Managing Director of the Liberia Petroleum Corporation LPRC, noted that article 21 (d) (ii) of the Liberian constitution excessive bail not be require, nor excessive fines impose, nor excessive punishment be inflicted.

According to him the Judiciary Committee intimated that the punishment for rape as provided in the Rape Law is excessive and therefore unconstitutional. "We the men of SOAP, and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity strongly disagree with this assertion by the judiciary committee of the Liberian senate and ask that a rapid review be schedule to retain the decision made in the 1986 constitution".

The two organization also call on the Judiciary system to expedite all rape cases as to bring perpetrator to justice also to vindicate the innocent, saying for the last nine years we have worked and advocated for Human Rights, Justice and Equity for all Liberians, and today we want to re-echo our messages of" No MEANS NO "and to emphatically declare that there is no in tolerate at all times, and must be dealt with at the highest level of priority.

"The decision we make, and the action we take must serve as deterrent to those who are involved in these inhuman acts and provide a safe haven for the survivors, because a life free from violence is everyone rights".

According to Mr. Nelson the fight against sexual base violence is a fight that cannot be won by women alone, he said we as the strongest gender must be the protector of our families, because it is biblical women came out from our rib, but then it is opposite effect when who should lead, and protect our family begin to abuse them this is a complete misrepresentation of what god has intended for us.

He told journalist that the two organizations has been involve in the advocacy of sexual base violence, and projects in eleven counties where they advocate for the rights of women and girls. He said the harm rape have on women is when they are committed without any harsh punishment the perpetrator will find it enjoyable because it is a bailable offense he adds.

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