Liberia: Rep. Yekeh Koluba Threatens to Train Men to Counter Attacks on Opposition Political Figures￼
MONROVIA – Ahead of the 2023 general and presidential elections in Liberia, Montserrado County district # 10 Representative Yekeh Kolubah has vowed to ensure the training of hundreds of supporters of the opposition community in preparedness to combat against brutalities and other violent acts being permeated against opposing and critical voices in the Liberian society.
Lawmaker Kolubah is a member of the disbanded Collaborating Political Parties (CPP).
Representative Kolubah observed that citizens, especially those who are differing with the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) led government continue to be brutalized in the presence of officers of the Liberia National Police (LNP), with nothing being done to bring the perpetrators to justice.
He said the men will be vetted and trained by him to “protect the people of this country”.
He made these comments when he addressed a news conference at his office in Sinkor, Monrovia on Sunday, July 31.
Representative Kolubah disclosed that he has received hundreds of berets and other regalia to uniform that those that will be trained to provide security for the opposition
“I received 1200 berets from our supporters. This is to tell the CDC that we are getting ready. Two to three weeks from now, we are coming to start training our men. We will protect the people of this country because we know that the police have become a private security to this President (George Manneh Weah). The police can be there and our citizens are brutalized. Gone are those days; these things will not happen again and the oppositions are getting ready to protect our people”.
He, however, fell short to disclose the name of a particular supporter who provided the materials for the training of his “men”.
Representative Kolubah also made reference to a statement made by President Weah threatening that those who abuse or use invectives against him will no longer walk freely in the streets during a dedicatory ceremony held in the country sometimes ago.
But according to Representative Kolubah, President Weah and his government have failed to provide security and protection for citizens in keeping with his constitutional mandate.
He said members of the opposition community will not take “guns” to provide protection for their leaders and the citizenry, but will train and provide the berets and other regalia to others because, the Liberian leader is more focused on “making music and dancing Buga”, instead of prioritizing the safety and security of his people.
“We will train our people not with guns to protect our people. Three weeks from now, we will be inviting the press to come on the beach where we will be training our people in self-defense and how to protect themselves and our political leaders. The people will stand up not with guns; the power is inherent in the people. 2023, baboon will divide kola because we will not sit down for your to brutalize us again”.
Representative Kolubah further pledged his loyalty and commitment to providing protection for all political leaders of the opposition, especially those within the CPP.
The latest move being made by Representative to train citizens to provide protection for the opposition community in Liberia comes in the wake of the brutalizing of Christopher Walters Sisulu Sivili of the Student Unification Party (SUP) at the University of Liberia.
Sivili was humiliated, tortured, naked, and brutalized by some members of the CDC-COP after he and others had gone before the US embassy to protest and present a petition against the high cost of living in Liberia during the celebration of the country’s 175th Independence.
Though he ran away from his attackers into a house nearby, he was captured, dragged out and beaten. Blood was seen oozing from his head, nose, mouth and other parts of his body.
The victim was reportedly to be nursing injuries at a local clinic in Monrovia after he was rescued from his attackers by unknown persons who risked him away on a commercial motorbike.
The Liberia National Police is yet to make an arrest.
December 9 protest
Representative Kolubah used the occasion to announce that he and others will be part of a move to petition the US government, through its embassy near Monrovia on corruption and other vices in the country.
He vowed to go across the country to recruit citizens to form part of the move.
He added that the protesters will not hesitate to “move on” the police if they intend to disrupt the gathering of the citizens.
Representative Kolubah said it is now time that the international community, including ECOWAS, United Nations to step in because, the police is allegedly serving as a “defense force” for the ruling party.
“If you people (international community) do not come in now, if something happens, don’t come because it will be difficult for us to listen to you”.
He said the Liberia Council of Churches (LCC) should also stand and advocate for the Liberian people.
Taking off chatroom
A chatroom was established on the social members by the leadership of the House of Representatives to have members promptly informed about legislative issues or matters.
But sometimes ago, multiple screenshots captured from the House’s chatroom went viral on the social media.
In some of those messages, it was alleged that members of the House received inducement from the executive to hastily pass the US$800M budget without thoroughly scrutinizing the document.
Accusing fingers were being pointed at Representative Kolubah and other opposition lawmakers for being the masterminds behind the leaking of sensitive information discussed in their chatroom to the public, including the Liberian media.
Representative Kolubah officially announced the decision taken by the administrator of the chatroom to boot him out for no justifiable reasons.
He questioned the rationale and authority behind his removal.
“I want to use this public medium to inform my supporters and the people of Liberia that I have been taken from the House of Representatives chatroom. Nobody get right to take me out of the chatroom. If you feel different about something, I think we got rules and order that we supposed to follow”.
Representative Kolubah noted that though some of his colleagues see the chatroom established for lawmakers as a “personal chatroom”, the business of the Liberian people cannot be discussed in “personal chatroom”.
He vowed to reach out to the House of Representatives’ leadership to ensure that he is added back in the chatroom to continue to discuss issues affecting the Liberian people.
Paying legislations without seeing it
For years now, Representative Kolubah has been raising alarm over the manner and form in which the House acts on proposed legislations and others emanating from the executive branch, headed by President George Manneh Weah.
He claimed that draft national budgets have been passed without thorough scrutiny just to please the Liberian leader.
“Communications and bills are coming (at the House of Representatives) but no copies are sent to our office. We only see the communication on the floor and it is not right because, our rules talk about communications coming to our offices and the agenda being prepared 24 hours or one day before the session”.
He wondered why the rules which were adopted by the Plenary are being grossly violated by the House of Representatives.
He observed that the time stipulated in the rules for lawmakers to attend session has not been adhered to by members of that August body.
“We are not following our rules or anything because we want to satisfy Ambassador Weah. Our rules say we should start the session by 12noon. But sometimes we start by 1PM or 2PM.