Over 200 Commit To Sustaining Peace In Liberia

The motorcyclists and tricyclists affixing their signatures to the resolution

Ganta, Nimba County – Over 200 executives and members of the Federation of Motorcycles and Tricycle Unions of Liberia (FOMTUL) have signed a resolution committing to denounce lawlessness and other form of violence ahead of the 2023 general and presidential elections in the country.

Report by Franklin Doloquee, Contributing Writer

Liberians are expected to go to the polls on Tuesday, October 10, 2023 to elect their new leaders, according to a timetable released by the National Elections Commission (NEC).

The motorcyclists made the commitment at the end of a tentative consultative dialogue held in Ganta, Nimba County recently.

The dialogue which was organized by Youth for Peace (Y4P), with funding from the Catholic Relief Service (CRS) and USAID, brought together participants from across the 15 counties.

It was intended to formulate a resolution to promote peace before, during and after the 2023 elections.

The participants committed the FOMTUL to a “force for positive change” in maintaining and sustaining peace and stability in the nation.

According to the Federation’s President Mr. John A.F.Kenyor, executives and members of the group have pledged their unflinching commitment to combat against acts which have the propensity to derail the peace and tranquility of post-conflict Liberia.

“Motorcycle and tricycle riders shall abide by every positive measure being put in place by the Federation of Motorcycles and tricycle unions of Liberia ( FOMTUL) as a way of achieving the fight against electoral violence in support for the sustainability of peace.”

He added that all commercial motorcyclists who are part of the federation will refrain from all forms of violence in a bid to guarantee the peaceful conduct of the elections.

He urged his members not to allow themselves to be use by politicians to carry out violent acts in their respective communities.

Mr. Kenyor added that motorcyclists should continue to be law abiding citizens and avoid taking the laws into their own hands in a bid to make Liberia a peaceful and stable society for all.

Also speaking, Liberia Peace Ambassador Mr .Eric Sumo Quaqua underscored the significance of sustaining peace and stability in the society.

He said the rule of law must be upheld by everyone if Liberia is to remain peaceful and move forward in terms of growth and development.

He disclosed that his office has been collaborating with other national and international actors to mitigate conflict and promote peace in the nation.

Mr. Quaqua added that the maintenance of peace in the society would advance sustainable developments in Liberia and as such, motorcyclists and others should remain peaceful and avoid being used by anyone to stir conflict.

“We have been part of the positive transformation underway in Liberia and throughout the Mano River Union. We note the importance of bringing together motorcyclists and tricyclists who are indeed key and relevant to stakeholders in the transformation process.”

He urged the participants to be proactive and continue to anticipate, monitor and curtail prevailing situations that could escalate to conflict or chaos.

He added that acts that could escalate to tensions must be avoided at all times.

Mr. Quaqua further urged the riders of motorcycles and tricycles to see what they are doing as means of livelihood.

He said though the sustenance of peace remains critical to government, it requires the collective efforts of all citizens to ensure that Liberia remains peaceful and stable.

For her part, the Country Manager of the Catholic Relief Service ( CRS) Abena Amedormey observed that commercial motorbike and tricycle riding plays a role in the socio-economic development of the nation.

She said the contributions being made by these citizens should not only be noticed, but it should also be respected by others.

“Now people who are not riders, will not understand the pressure and the stresses you experience in an attempt to make ends mean so you people are very importance in the society”, she added.

She, however, pledged her organization’s support and commitment to working with the leadership and members of the group as “close partners” to accelerate the growth and development of the society.

Madam Amedormey said her group will continue to provide support for expansion and capacity building for members of the Federation of Motorcycles and Tricycle Unions of Liberia (FOMTUL).

She commended the USAID, through its Deputy Country Director to Liberia Dr. Mandy Dagold for the guidance and support towards efforts being applied by the CRS to address issues faced by communities in Liberia.

Dr. Dagold, however, expressed gratitude to the participants for the formulation of the resolution.

She said: “It’s truly an honor to see motorcyclists from across the nation come together to sign a joint resolution committing members of the motorcyclist Union to maintain peace in the Country.”