DISTURBING REPORTS of politically-related violence in Lofa’s first district last Friday that led to the loss of lives has cast a dark pall over the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
RECKLESS, DESPERATE, and increasingly disdainful of the law as some officials from both the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) and the opposition Unity Party (UP) have accused each other of inciting the violence that took place in Foya, the district headquarters.
JEFFERSON KOIJEE, Secretary General of the CDC, condemned the death of CDC partisans whom he claimed were loyal members of the party.
“WHILE EXECUTING THEIR depraved and devilish of extreme violence, these Unity Party warmongers invaded the premises of Rep. Thomas Fallah and his family, besieging it for several hours while Joint Security intervention was being sought out.
HOWEVER, THE SECRETARY General of the UP, Amos Tweh, vehemently denied Koijee’s allegations and accused supporters of the CDC in Foya of being responsible for the violence, claiming that supporters of the UP were “attacked” while on their way to ‘welcome some members of some members of the party diaspora who were visiting Foya.
IN LIBERIA, ANXIETY is mounting over the general elections scheduled to take place on October 10.
FOR PRESIDENT GEORGE WEAH, ensuring the success of the polls may be his toughest challenge yet. Having failed on many counts in his stewardship, failure to keep the country safe for voting could tip the country into a vortex of turmoil with unpredictable but certainly, dire outcomes.
CONDEMNATIONS FROM LOCAL and international partners to Liberia’s democracy have since trailed last Friday’s violence.
ACCORDING TO THE ECONOMIC COMMUNITY of West African States (ECOWAS) and the United Nations (UN) in a press release said in the spirit of the Farmington River Declaration 2023, the protection of human rights, and under the due process of the rule of law, called on the leaders of the Unity Party (UP) and Coalition of Democratic Change (CDC) to strongly urge their partisans to refrain from provocation and any other acts of violence.
ECOWAS AND UN FURTHER, meanwhile, invite the UP and CDC to fully cooperate with the LNP in the ongoing investigations.
Our democracy is growing, but we are on a bad path when impunity reins and some people are above the law. It does not offer much hope going forward.
THE COUNCIL OF CHURCHES issued a press release, and called on the Joint Security to initiate a comprehensive and impartial investigation into the incident to ensure that those responsible for the brutal acts are brought to justice.
FURTHERMORE, the Council urged the Unity Party and Coalition of Democratic Change, who are believed to be at the center of the fracas, to cooperate fully with the Joint Security in the investigation. This appeal for cooperation is seen as a crucial step toward resolving the matter and maintaining peace in the region.
THE LIBERIA COUNCIL OF CHURCHES also addressed Liberia’s youth, emphasizing the importance of their responsibilities as future leaders and the inheritors of the nation. They strongly discouraged the involvement of young people in acts of violence orchestrated by politicians. The Council described such acts as “ungodly, inhumane, and unpatriotic” and reminded the youth that Liberia has endured significant hardships in the past.
POLITICIANS should focus on issues-based campaigns, rather and caution their supporters to instigate violence.
The reoccurring electoral violence in this month’s election, without any prosecution of culprits, is an indictment of security agencies.
SECURITY AGENCIES must act to arrest and prosecute those perpetuating electoral violence, otherwise the consequences could be dire for the country.
OUR DEMOCRACY IS GROWING, but we are on a bad path when impunity rein and some people are above the law. It does not offer much hope going forward.