Lofa Youth Slam Own Senator for False Allegations Linking Mayor Koijee to ’26 Violence
MONROVIA – A consortium of Lofa youth leaders and university students have slammed the county’s Senator Steve Zargo over his comments that the City Mayor of Monrovia Jefferson Koijee be suspended pending the outcome of the July ’26 Independence Day fracas.
The group said it wouldn’t have dignified the “misguided statement” of Sen. Zargo, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Security and National Defense, made with a response but for the unsubstantiated allegations, and by his wrong insinuations, he unjustly tried to malign Koijee.
The group said Sen. Zargo’s attempt to link Koijee to the unfortunate situation on ’26 Day was to denigrate and impugn his reputation.
“We find it quite disturbing that a senator of Zargo’s standing would descend so low in expressing his hate for the Monrovia City Mayor. Sen. Zargo who should be preoccupied with the thought of dispensing independent security advice for the general benefit of the country has willfully elected to desecrate the hard standards of the position of Defense, Security, and Intelligence of the Honorable Liberian Senate for personal, selfish political gains.”
“We believe it’s high time the senate considers whether Sen. Zargo who’s consumed in political bigotry should continue to hold a crucial position as Defense, Security and Intelligence Chair or an independent, professional Senator should.
As someone who is versed in security, as Sen. Zargo claimed, the group said it had thought the Lofa Senator would have used his press conference to denounce violence and educate Liberians more on the tenets of insecurity rather than unjustifiably reference Mayor Koijee.
“We are even deeply concerned by the broad day hypocrisy of how Mr. Zargo who constantly stirs up tribal confusion in Lofa county and has come under several public condemnations on his campaign of hate and tribal rhetoric can now suddenly turn out to be a person ‘’concerned about security,” the said.
The group said the statement released by Senator Zargo on Koijee was “out of frustration” because he and other leaders’ failure to emancipate the people of Lofa County from underdevelopment has given rise to the likes of Koijee, Thomas Fallah and Co, who continue to work to improve the lives of ordinary natives of the county since their rise to power in 2018.
“Lofa believes only with the likes of the new breed of government officials from the county can the county benefit from its actual share of the national cake as being exhibited,” the group said.
“Sen. Zargo and others have failed the people of Lofa and it’s time they take the exit door; a million press conferences will not help him.We at the same time call on the outgoing Senator to apologize to Mayor Koijee for his wild and negligent statement spewed out earlier Tuesday.
“We want to reiterate our zero tolerance for violence and welcome the recent statement condemning violence and calling for swift prosecution of perpetrators by the President of Liberia, His Excellency Dr. George Manneh Weah as well as the International Community. We believe this is in the right direction for our fledging democracy.”
Zargo, who’s seeking re-election in 2023, has come under immense criticism for making “conflict-sensitive” statements after he called on Lofians (natives of Lofa) not to vote for a Kpelle-speaking Senator, as the county was home to the “real owners”, including Lorma, Kissi, Mandingos, Gbandi.