MONROVIA — The opposition Unity Party has described as an “imminent life-threatening situation” against its standard bearer, Joseph Boakai, from the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) by its government operatives following the release of a CCTV footage of Boakai departing the Roberts International Airport early Monday morning.
By Henry Karmo [email protected]
They also said their intelligence bureau has also established that other high-ranking members of the “Rescue Mission”, a mantra of the Unity Party, are being tracked on the orders of President George Weah.
At a news conference held at the party’s campaign headquarters, Mr. Mohammed Ali, spokesman for the campaign of Unity Party, accused the National Security Agency (NSA) Deputy Director, Sam Siryon, for unlawfully releasing to journalists at his Freedom FM radio station and surrogates of the CDC a Close Circuit TV (CCTV) footage of the Unity Party’s Standard Bearer making his way through the airport terminal to the plane.
Mo Ali said: “The Rescue Mission Campaign through its Intelligence Bureau has now determined that there is an imminent threat to the life of our Standard Bearer from the CDC and its government operatives. Our intelligence bureau has also found that other high ranking members of the Rescue Mission are being tracked on the orders of President George Weah.”
According to Ali, the CCTV footage was sent to NSA Deputy Director Sam Siryon by RIA Managing Director Martin Hayes.
“The unauthorized release of CCTV footage of former Vice President Joseph N. Boakai by authorities of the RIA, at the behest of President George Manneh Weah, to surrogates of the CDC is clear violation of Section 17.40.3 of the Liberia Civil Aviation Regulations, Volume XXI, No. 70. August 11, 2021.
“The CCTV footage is part of the Passenger Name Record (PNR) of the UP’s Standard Bearer and it is his privacy. The right to that privacy was clearly violated yesterday by the RIA and the government operating through the NSA and its surrogates.”
In reference to the law governing CCTV footage, he further said.
Mr. Ali also informed journalists once the CCTV footage of their Standard Bearer was released by the NSA Director, the Intelligence Bureau of the Rescue Mission Campaign launched an immediate investigation to determine the motives behind such a blatant violation of privacy rights.
“Our intelligence has found that the Government of Liberia through the National Security Agency, other state security agencies, and privately hired security groups/individuals, have been tracking every movement of the UP Standard Bearer with the utmost sinister motive.”
He further stated that the action by the NSA boss comes as no surprise that government officials and surrogates of the CDC have been planted to propagate that JNB is “sick and will die soon”.
The use of the PNR of the former Vice President and UP Standard Bearer for propaganda purpose which has put his life in eminent danger must claim the immediate attention of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union (AU), the US Embassy, the European Union, the United Nations and all other Diplomatic mission and international partners in and out of Liberia.
The international community should also take cognizance of the fact that the Weah government has sent a clear signal to the rest of the world that no one’s privacy, including international travelers, passing through the RIA in Liberia, is guaranteed. Said privacy could be leaked to surrogates of the CDC at any point in time for political or private sinister motives.
“President Weah and his henchmen have realized that they will massively lose the ensuing October 10, 2023 polls and hence have set out to plunge Liberia into an irreversible chaos. These violations of the privacy of officials of the Rescue Mission is worrisome and we all now fear that the government has set out to get at us in the most vicious way,” Ali said.
Reminiscing the August 14, 2023 CDC, and UP riot, he said, the CDC sent its thugs and hooligans to attack the UP Campaign headquarters.
“It has now been revealed that the attacks which were ordered by the hierarchy of the CDC with the approbation of President Weah had intended to inflict bodily harm and injuries on the person of former Vice President Joseph N. Boakai, Sr.”
“Despite massive public outcries and condemnations, the Liberia National Police and the Ministry of Justice deliberately refused to conduct any investigation into the attacks on the campaign headquarters of the Unity Party.
“In spite of all these, we called on our supporters to continue the campaign unabated as we are doing everything to ensure their safety. We will not allow this country to retrogress to war years. We will not allow any amount of threats to cowered us into surrendering the election to state sponsored gang looters who are bent on destroying the country.”
“That is why we are calling on all of our supporters to come out en masse to vote #2 on October 10, 2023, in order to remove this nightmare from the helm of power of our country.”
Legal team reviewing possible lawsuit against RIA
Ali also informed journalists that the Legal Team of the Rescue Mission Campaign is reviewing all of the legal implications associated with the release of the CCTV footage of the UP’s Standard Bearer and will advise appropriately.