Liberia: Restraint Placed on 5-15 Radio Is a Violation of the Constitution – Atty. Kofi Woods

Gbarnga – Attorney Samuel Kofi Woods says restraint placed on Radio Bushord D-15 by the government not to relay the Costa Show is a glaring violation of the Constitution, regional and international human rights law and suppression of free speech that must be resisted by Liberians.

“We must come together and fight what’s right. No power concedes to cowardice and zombism,” Woods said.

The Liberian government has maintained that Henry Costa, host of the popular Costa Show, is a fugitive from the Liberian government, and can’t host radio programs to communicate to his Liberian audience while in the United States of America. The government said any act contrary to such will be a violation of the terms of the permit issued the station by the Ministry of Information and licensing conditions pulmugated under the Telecommunications Act of Liberia.

But Woods, speaking Sunday in Gbarnga when he served as guest speaker at program marking the induction of new executive members of the opposition Liberty Party, said the decision by the government is a suppression of free speech.

“The guarantees thereof maintain that we must be responsible and only court of competent jurisdiction can act in ways that set limits but not a paranoid government,” Woods said.

Woods wants the government focus on the job or task of development, improve basic services and give citizens life they so desire rather than preoccupying with things that don’t matter.

Woods, a former minister of Public Works and Labor under former president Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, wants the station to proceed and broadcast what it intends bearing full responsibility thereof. “Don’t cow into submission because the government is intolerant,” Woods said. “We will defend your right to do so.”

On the victory of former Associate Justice Kabineh Ja’neh at the ECOWAS court against the government, Woods said the judgement of the court must be honored otherwise there will be sanctions. “Justice for all must be guaranteed otherwise we will resort to chaos.

Woods said ordinary citizens are suffering from pains and agony everyday because of their faith and confidence in the system of justice have been bruised.

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