20 June 2018

Liberia: Protest Looms

Liberians calling for the establishment of war and economic crimes court are expected to stage a protest in Central Monrovia over the delay in the establishment of the war and economic crime court as prayed for in their petition to the 54th National Legislature a month ago.

According to the concerned citizens, they are planning to stage a peaceful protest in the country, which would eventually bring normal activities to a standstill as a means of putting government's feet to the ground to adhere to their quest.

But many Liberians are divided over the establishment of war crime courts. "We think that this establishment will further divide us," Andrew S. Kollie said.

It can be recalled, citizens gathered in their numbers a month ago and petitioned lawmakers to, among other things establish an extraordinary court (war and economy crime courts) to enable alleged culprits of war and economic crimes have their days in court, something the group claimed would help in healing the wounds caused by the country's 14 years civil unrest.

During the presentation of their petition, the group was given three weeks by the legislature to make determination into said petition. But up to present, there has been no outcome of said document as it remains in committee room without any fate that those legislators would come up with any determination in that regard.

The group considered the reported failure by the lawmakers to give attention to their petition as slap in their faces and sadden on the part of legislators who took oath to rightfully represent and protect the interest of the Liberian people reason for the protest.

Speaking with this paper on the issue, the lead campaigner for the establishment of war and economic crimes court, Franklin Wesseh said he thought the George Weah government could make some gains out of the pitfalls of the past regimes by signing the document for the establishment of an extraordinary court in Liberia.

Wesseh asserted that ex-President Sirleaf failed to win the fight against corruption and reconciling the people of Liberia, something he said a succeeding government would want to run with to make enviable gains in order to leave a legacy.

Wesseh further stated that if President Weah can muster the political will to make people have their days in court to either clear their names or face the weight of the law if found guilty, he would go down in history as Liberia best president ever.

He laments that the culture of impunity has engulfed the country simply because leaders find it difficult or lack political will to deal with their colleagues, noting upon their next protest, they are going to ensure that their call are adhere to by this government.

"Ignorance is one thing that is actually affecting us Liberians. We talking about war crimes court and people are discussing loan. To them, once there is money to connect road from X to Y, it's better and it does not matter where the money comes from," Wesseh said.

He noted that while it is true one cannot undo the crimes and war of yesterday but there can be a lesson learn saying "it is not too late for justice; justice is best serve when cold."

The Right Advocate argued that the establishment of the extraordinary court to prosecute perpetrators who committed atrocity would bring about speedy growth, development, peace and stability in the land.

"Instead of having people being masquerading in the pool of impunity, we will say justice has taking its course when we see some of them landing in south beach or restituting stolen funds," he added.

Wesseh emphasized that the restitution of stolen funds would further boast the Liberian economic and to a largest extend heal wounds of the war as justice would be served.

Meanwhile, critics wonder why the George Weah administration is delaying in signing said document since in fact he has no record or involvement in the 14 years of civil unrest which claimed thousands of lives in Liberia.

They further wondered as to whether or not president Weah is trying to defend or protect warlords instead of people who are victims of their actions as reason for not wanting to give attention to the cry for the establishment of the war and economic crimes courts in the country.

Liberia

Over L$15 Billion Outside Banking System

The acting chairman of the Board of Governors and incoming Executive Governor of CBL, Nathaniel Patray, has revealed… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2018 The New Republic Liberia. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.