The Association of Liberian Journalists in the Americas (ALJA) says it is troubled by recent calls by the chairman of the Coalition of Democratic change (CDC), Mulbah Morlu, for the replacement of nonpartisans of the CDC serving in the Liberian government with those of the party.
According to the CDC Chairman, his proposition if implemented would help create employment opportunities for partisans of the party. However, in a press release issued on March 29, 2021, ALJA termed Chairman Morlu's statement as selfish and divisive.
The Association says the statement has the propensity of polarizing Liberians and eroding the prevailing peace and stability in Liberia. The Association condemned the statement in the strongest term; and called on the Weah administration and Liberians the world over to do same.
ALJA says every Liberian irrespective of tribal, political, and religious affiliations has the constitutional right to live and work in Liberia. As such, the Association maintains, the privilege of serving in the Liberian government should not be based on an individual's political affiliation, but competence and employable skills.
ALJA asserts that Chairman Morlu's attempt to deny nonpartisans of the CDC such right and privilege could set a dangerous precedent. The CDC Chairman at a press conference held on Friday, March 19, 2021 instructed Transport Minister Samuel Wulu to rescind his recent appointment of Mr. Oliver Dillion, as Director for Ports and Border Entry at the Ministry of Transport. Then Mr. Morlu reportedly said that opposition members should not be given positions in the CDC administration while qualified partisans of the party remain unemployed. Mr. Oliver Dillion is brother of Montserrado County Senator, Darius Dillion.
At the press conference, Mr. Morlu warned Cabinet Ministers in the CDC-led administration to desist from appointing people in the opposition asserting that the appointment of Senator Dillion's brother was an insult to the CDC and its members who fought hard to bring them to power.
ALJA says Mr. Morlu's utterance is counterproductive to the culture of inclusive democratic governance that is important to sustaining the peace and security in the country and ensuring that the country's democracy is strong and healthy as it transitions from one administration to the next.
Meanwhile, the Association is unequivocally condemning the recent arson attacks on the home of Associate Supreme Court Justice James Nagbe and the offices of the National Elections Commission (NEC).
ALJA says the attacks threatened Liberia's peace and stability. The Association urged government security forces to exert every legal effort in bringing the perpetrators of the attacks to justice. The Association said after a civil war which lasted for more than a decade and resulted in the death and displacement of hundreds of thousands of Liberians, Liberia has no more tolerance for violence as a means of resolving disputes.
The Association called on Liberians to shun violence and seek peaceful, constitutional, and legal redress to issues arising in the country.
ALJA is a conglomeration of current and retired Liberian journalists residing in the Americas. It is a 501c (3) non-profit organization. The Association was founded in 1998 with the objectives of fostering companionship amongst its members and their American counterparts. Additionally, ALJA is committed to advancing press freedom through media capacity building, and the fostering of good governance in Liberia through media advocacy.