Residents Mount Roadblock to Protest Removal of Decomposed Corpse
Monrovia – Residents of the Redemption Road community in Monrovia on Tuesday set up roadblocks in demand of the removal of a dead body that surfaced on the beach there since Monday evening.
“For sure we know that but in this case we know that when we do it, it will be the only way our plight will be heard. If we just stand and talk no one will pay attention to us.
Since yesterday we have been talking no one stop but this morning we set up a roadblock and the Deputy Inspector General of the Police came here”- Luseni Kamara, Leader of Protesting Redemption Road Resident
(Decomposing corpse picture) Readers discretion advised
The roadblocks paralyzed normal vehicular traffic at a time when many motorists were using the route as an alternative due to road work being done on the portion of the UN Drive that intersects Camp Johnson Road.
The mob, predominantly youth, fumed over the presence of the body of an unidentified man, at the verge of bursting open. The body lies just where the main drainage empties into the Atlantic Ocean.
The Homicide Division of the Liberian National Police had come and seen the body but they did not take it away.
From a little distance, it could be seen, with the unidentified man in black-like trousers without a shirt making his deformed limbs and abdomen visible.
“That was done with the hope of calling on government authorities to be concerned about this,” Luseni Kamara, the leader of the mob. As he spoke, a long array of vehicles lined up, with motorists and commuters impatiently looking into the open sea.
“This body [smells],” Kamara told our reporter. “It surfaced since yesterday evening. We tried to call some authorities.
Abraham Kromah (newly nominated Police Inspector General for Operations) was here this morning and we told him the situation and he told us that he was going to make sure that people were coming here to have the body removed,” he added.
“Flies from the body to our food, looking at the kind of houses that we live in here,” he said, stretching his hands to a line of makeshift houses made partly of concrete and wood.
“We did this to call the government to come to our aid. We need this thing to be taken out of this place,” he said to the indistinct muttering of his colleagues, some of them wearing strong and mean faces.
A Police officer managed to persuade the mob into removing the roadblocks to allow vehicular traffic to flow, brokering a truce with the mob that the body would have been removed before or by 15:00 GMT but up to press time the body still lied swollen, decomposed on the beach.
Kamara said they were not afraid of being jailed for setting up the roadblocks; he said they were prepared for any reprisal. “We will go back on the street and block the street to call for more attention.”
He said he and his mob were aware of the encroachment upon the rights of the general public but said it was the only means to get their message across.
“For sure we know that but in this case we know that when we do it, it will be the only way our plight will be heard. If we just stand and talk no one will pay attention to us. Since yesterday we have been talking no one stop but this morning we [set up a roadblock and the Deputy Inspector General of the Police came here].”
It is becoming common now where dead bodies are found on beaches in Monrovia. Michael Allison who was a subject of an investigation by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission was found dead on the beach behind the Executive Mansion close to the same vicinity of the current unknown dead body.
Former Liberia Petroleum refining Company (LPRC) Managing Director Harry Greaves dead body was found the on the same beach not also far the location of the dead man that sparked Tuesday’s protest.