Monrovia – A group of eminent citizens hailing from Grand Cape Mount County has accused former Senator Victor Watson and his financier, Idrissa Massaley of leading a group of thugs to wreak havoc in the county.
In a statement issued during a landmark press conference in Monrovia recently, the citizens said the violence is spiraling across the county and the two main alleged perpetrators are not being brought to book.
“Watson and Massaley have been leading a group of thugs who have been wreaking havoc on our people,” the citizens said in a statement read by Dr. Lyndon Mabande, an eminent citizen of the county and a son of Dambala Town, Porkpa District.
“They have inflicted wounds on residents, some of whom have to be brought to JFK to seek medical attention. Watson’s groups have also been destroying private and public properties in those towns. He is practically uncontrollable.”
He continued: “The men of ‘Idrissa and Watson are marauding in towns in cape Mount causing havoc and upheaval by destroying homes, clinics, town halls, educational facilities and injuring and threatening people, local leaders and school administrators.”
Dr. Mabande noted that the pair (Idrissa and Watson) have been traveling around the county in a large convoy under the guise of thanking people who voted for candidate Watson while at the same time, using the opportunity to reinforce the belief that he (Watson), instead of Simeon Taylor, won the 2020 Senatorial election and the Supreme Court deprived him of that position.
Former Senator Watson could not be reached for comments as his mobile number has been switched off up to press time and did not respond to text messages sent to him.
However, 20 of the young men who have been alleged of carrying out the acts have been arrested by the police detachment of Cape Mount and are undergoing investigation. Despite the mass arrest, residents feel frustrated that their ringleaders, Watson and Masasaley, are yet to be apprehended or called in for questioning.
This has placed the people in Cape Mount in continuous fear for their lives and their properties, the citizens said.
Mr. Watson, who completed the unexpired tenure of the late Senator Edward Boakai Dagoseh, ran on the ticket of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change in the 2020 special senatorial election, but he lost to Simeon Taylor of the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP). Watson disagreed with the results and launched a sustained legal battle he eventually lost in the Supreme Court in August, this year.
The prolonged court case plunged the county in a leadership vacuum and under-representation since the December 8, 2020 midterm senatorial elections.
The citizens claimed that following Watson’s refusal to accept defeat, he and his financer were heard on a radio station owned and operated by Mr. Masssalay, telling the people that former Senator Watson is still the Senator and he will not accept Senator Taylor as the Senator despite the Supreme Court’s ruling.
“On October 2, 2021, Watson and Massaley without any regard to observing the norms and tradition for visiting towns to be accorded the proper culture of welcoming entered Damballa along with their tugs to the surprise of the citizens and their leaders in their trucks, Jeeps, and motorbikes” the citizens claimed.
They said upon the orders of the pair who also drove in the convoy, the over one thousand strong men all clad in red berets and red headbands began unleashing havoc by throwing stones indiscriminately on roofs and windows of homes and public properties.
Some women and children sustained injuries during this incident and had to be brought down to Monrovia for treatment, they claimed.
The claimed that the group further threatened to return and inflict more injuries and property damage and to kill the people of Damballa town as well as to set the town on fire”.
The citizens are living in fear due to threats and therefore calling on the government to immediately intervene so as to avoid further situations already, the citizens are alleging of seeing single barrel pistols, machetes, and other deadly weapons with Watson and his financier.
“We are appealing to the government to take the matter seriously as any inaction will serve as a catalyst for Idrissa and Watson to continue their acts of violence against the peaceful citizens of Grand Cape Mount County,” Dr. Mabande stated.