spot_imgspot_img
Thursday, June 20, 2024

THE FARMINGTON WHITEWASH: FIVE PLUS YEARS OF POLITICAL VIOLENCE UNDER PRESIDENT GEORGE WEAH CAN NOT BE WIPED AWAY SO EASILY

Date:

An opinion by Wonderr K. Freeman, Attorney, CFCS  

President George Weah of Liberia fancies himself as a “man of peace”. And that he was ultimately elected President, I would suppose many Liberians also thought so. I suppose ex-President Ellen Johnson equally thought so when she made him “peace” ambassador. Or maybe she was “buying” the peace, since the only group carrying out repeated violence under her regime was George Weah’s CDC.

And CDC made so much hullabaloo about Madam Sirleaf links to Charles Taylor, contrasting the same with Mr. Weah, who, as they claimed, was “Mr. Clean” – Mr. “Man of Peace”. Liberians voted for Ellen Johnson – on multiple occasions too – not because she was a saint. No one is. But because she was truthful and made amends. Now, Ellen is history, so we will allow her a peaceful retirement.

But I’m appalled at the rising level of violence in George Weah’s Liberia, especially given the fact that he has long paraded himself as a “man of peace”. I mean, since our “man of peace” became President, Liberia has seen nothing but recurrent political violence. If it’s not election-related violence, then it is violence against opposition politicians or violence against journalists. What’s really going on with our “man of peace”?

In June of 2019, much early on into his Presidency, George Manneh Weah, our “man of peace”, while dedicating the newly constructed Duport Road Market openly threatened citizens, saying “those that constantly threatening the [state], constantly inciting people”…” those that constantly insulting the President, I want to be clear; after this, there will be no citizens in this country, I can defy you that will ever insult the President and think you will walk on the streets freely.

Via this declaration, President Weah made it very clear to state agents, what they should do to those who criticize him – or as he sees it “insult him”. Not surprisingly, since then, there has been even more political violence. People like Jefferson Koijee do listen keenly to President Weah. Koijee, ever the loyal henchman, and taking his cue from his boss, Mr. Weah’s, issued his own infamous and ominous threat: that anyone he catches threatening their “revolution” will be met in “flesh and blood”.

Since those two threats, a lot of flesh and blood of Liberian citizens have been spilled on the streets of Monrovia and in the towns and villages of Liberia. Of course, our “man of peace” remained quiet the whole while; I assumed he’s most likely very satisfied.

Under George Weah’s Presidency, it’s hard to go even one week without political violence occurring. Not a week passes by without some government agent or CDC party militants wreaking havoc on opposition politician(s), journalists, or government critics. Even ordinary citizens are not spared the Weah/CDC orgy of violence. Why is political violence a weekly occurrence under “peaceful” George Weah?

This is a strange kind of “peaceful” man! And while all this political violence is occurring, our “man of peace” is completely silent! If he ever speaks, he makes very sure he’s standing behind the pulpit at Forky Klon Church, where the congregation has nothing else to say but shout “Amen’s” and “praise the Lord’s”. The only other time he speaks is when he’s at his musical studio, where he takes the liberty to sing about “Mr. B” and “Mr. C”.

And all the wannabe rastas around him… be like… “yeah man”, “wat-ta gwan man”, “more violence man”…”bomboclat”. Never, never does our “man of peace” ever call a press conference to address the rising violence and general insecurity in the country – and give journalists an opportunity to ask questions.

Amidst all this, we get the good news that ECOWAS sent an Envoy to Liberia. After all, justice for victims of violence is the last thing our “peaceful” President’s mind. He rather spends his time dancing “buga” and singing about Mr. B. and Mr. C. The Envoy came alright, but not to talk about justice for victims of political violence and ever rising insecurities. He came to get the all the political parties to sign a nice, beautiful piece of paper that promises “no more violence” in Liberia.

I bet he also came to take picture with President Weah so that the ECOWAS website will have a nice, beautiful picture to go with the story. My question is: with so much political violence, how can an ECOWAS envoy come all the way from Abuja just for photo op? How can we forget that only a few days before this Farmington Whitewash, residents of Old Road Joe Bar community were attacked – in the presence of the Police, of course. To date, the ring leaders of the Old Road violence are still free, no arrests and no prosecution.

Also, just prior to that violence and the ECOWAS’ Envoy’s visit, the “Honorable” Acarous Gray, led a bunch of hired thugs to the venerable halls “Lux in Tenebris” and by the time he left, some people were bleeding, and that sacred ground was desecrated. The UL campus is about 5 min walk from LNP headquarters. Unsurprisingly, LNP officers were present as Gray and his hired thugs wreak havoc. As usual no arrest or prosecution followed. CDC people are simply above the law!

Before a diplomatic Envoy comes to a country, I assume he would apprise himself of the situation on the ground. But our ECOWAS envoy, it seems, didn’t want to spoil the photo-op by talking about justice for victims of political violence under Mr. Weah. Disappointing? Yes! But not shocking. After all, it’s the same African leaders that sent envoys to Kenya after the post-election violence of 2008 – to broker peace, and allocate government jobs, but said and did nothing about justice for the victims.

And when the ICC mustered the courage to charge a “few big shots”, the African Union (AU) called it a “Western” conspiracy against Africa. Very laughable! A “Western” conspiracy with 30+ African signatories? It’s the same African leaders that had an African “human rights” court in The Gambia pontificating on human rights, while Yahya Jammeh was bloodletting with impunity.

So, yes, a little disappointing but, that’s the norm for African leaders – to care more about protecting Africa’s “big men” than about the victims of violence. Lest we forget, like happiness, peace is not something you pursue deliberately. Peace is a by-product. You pursue justice, fairness, and good governance, and then you get peace. One conviction for political violence in Liberia will do more for peace than 100 Farmington declarations. Just one! When will African leaders learn? When will they put the interest of their people first?

Having been abandoned by ECOWAS, I think, for the sake of our country, we should begin documenting the numerous crimes, under President Weah. I’m jumpstarting the documentation. I will do just a “shortlist” of instances of political violence – to complete this article. But I encourage all Liberians to fully document all crimes (including corruption and economic crimes), being committed weekly by CDC big shots and hooligans. By January 2024, it’s very clear our “peaceful” President will exit the Mansion, to pursue his musical career and his preaching hobby.

We need the full record of crimes committed under his regime. It will greatly help law enforcement to start judgment day – the day that CDCians think will never come. So, here is my “shortlist” – with the summary first, and the details next. The documentation continues…

Shortlist: No. of politically-motivated violent incidents and abuse of power under the George Weah Presidency (2018-present) 27 Percent
Committed by CDC members, state agents or “unknown” persons 26 96%
Committed by political opposition individuals/groups 1 4%
Committed in the presence of state security officer.

Including Officers from LNP, NSA, LDEA, SSS, Others

20 74%
Number of incidents in which arrests were made 3 11%
Number of incidents in which conviction was obtained 0 0%

 

DATE DESCRIPTION Alleged Criminal Conduct Accused (Individuals/Groups/State Functionary)
Nov-18 Attack on opposition candidate in the election: Cornelia Kruah (UP) vs John Weah (CDC) Aggravated Assaults, Vandalism, Property Damage Jefferson Koijee, Solomon George, CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Jan-19 Armed attacks on critical reporting: Roots FM, Henry Costa Armed Robbery, Vandalism Unknown Persons
Feb-19 Attack critical political commentary, Roots FM/Henry Costa Vandalism, Hooliganism, Criminal Mischief, etc Unknown Persons
Aug-19 Attacks on opposition candidate in the election: Telia Urey vs Abu Kamara Aggravated Assaults, Vandalism, Property Damage CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Aug-19 CDC partisans assault and brutalization of Marvin Sackor, Deputy Police Director, 11 others Darrius Dillon supporters (celebrating election victory) Assault, Hooliganism, Criminal Mischief, Disorderly Conduct, etc Jefferson Koijee, CDC Zebra Unit, CDC Partisans/Thugs
Aug-19 Attack on Gregory Coleman, ex-Director of Nat’l Bureau of Concession Vandalism, Hooliganism, Criminal Mischief, etc CDC Youth League, Partisans/Hired Thugs
Aug-19 Attempted murder of Jestina Taylor shortly after publicly accusing Jefferson Koijee (CDC) of multiple violent crimes Attempted Murder, Rape, Torture, Aggravated Assaults, Illegal Inprisonment Unknown
Sep-2019 Unlawful detention of citizens at CDC headquarters Unlawful Arrest and Detention, Assaults, Torture, Felonious Restraint Jefferson Koijee, CDC Zebra Unit, CDC Partisans/Thugs
Sep-2019 State sponsored vandalism and unlawful shutdown of Roots FM of Henry Costa, under guises of serving a search warrant Official Oppression/Misconduct, Vandalism Syrenius Cephus (Solicitor General), LNP Officers, Others
Jan-2020 Attacks on journalist Chris Walker, for reporting a sports story that allegedly displeased George Weah Official Oppression/Misconduct, Vandalism, Assault LNP Officers
Mar-2020 Attacks on multiple journalists: Charles B. Yates, Cholo Brooks, Frank Payne & Trojan Kiazolu Official Oppression/Misconduct, Vandalism, Official Harassment NSA Officers/LDEA Officers, LNP Officers
Sep-2020 Attack on Yekeh Kolubah while trying to host a children’s party Vandalism, Assault, Arson, Rioting, Disorderly Conduct Hired Thugs, Alleged L.D.E.A agents, Unknown
Jan-2020 State sponsored unlawful pursuit of Costa >>escape from Liberia. >>bogus charges/extradition request denied Abuse of power, official oppression MOJ, State Agents
Jul-20 Attacks on Yekeh Kolubah and Alex Cummings in GrandGedeh to discuss with partisans /stakeholders Vandalism, Hooliganism, Felonious Restraint, False Imprisonment CDC, Partisans/Hired Thugs, Local Gov’t Officials

 

DATE DESCRIPTION Alleged Criminal Conduct Accused (Individuals/Groups/State Functionary)
Dec-2020 “Country Devil” (mask persons) attack on independent candidate Botoe Kanneh: Gbarpolu County Senatorial Election Vandalism, Hooliganism, Official Misconduct etc CDC, Partisans/Hired Thugs, Local Government Officials
Sept-20 Attacks and stoning of opposition politician Darius Dillion while on a community outreach in Dist 16 Monts Co Vandalism, Hooliganism, Public Nuisance, Criminal Mischief, Others CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Dec-20 Attacks on CPP partisans in the election of (CPP) Simeon Taylor vs Victor Watson (CDC) Arson, Aggravated Assaults, Vandalism, Hooliganism CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Sept-2020 Routine attack on Yekeh Kolubah residence, Vandalism, Assault, Vehicle/Residence Damage CDC Youth League, Partisans/Hired Thugs
June-1-20 Attacks on journ. Trojan Kiazolu/H Getermina of Fabric FM Assault, official oppression, LNP Officers
Feb-2022 Unlawful arrest and detention of opposition figure Isaac V. Tukpah, without charge and without probable cause Official Oppression/Misconduct, Abuse of Office NSA Officers
Aug-22 CDC “Council of Patriots” attacks on UL Students Attempted Murder, Aggravated Assaults; CDC Partisans (Council of Patriots)/Hired Thugs
Dec-22 Pro CDC Thugs attack on Lewis Brown at a local radio station – for making critical comments against government Vandalism, Hooliganism, Public Nuisance, Criminal Mischief, Others CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
April-22 Attack on UL student at the Amos Sawyer memorial program allegedly on Jefferson Koijee’s orders Vandalism, Hooliganism, Aggravated Assault Jefferson Koijee and CDC partisans (Sabu Unit)
June-2022 Attack on Yekeh Kolubah Vehicle in Lofa Vandalism, Arson, Aggravated Assault CDC Thomas Fallah, Hired Thugs
Mar-2023 CDC partisans led by Moses Acarus Grey “lunch” on UL Campus Assaults, Vandalism>>injuries Acarous Gray & CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Mar-2023 CDC Youth League attack in Dist 10, under the guise of voter registration Assaults, Theft, Vandalism, Hooliganism Emmanuel “Neto” Johnson, CDC Partisans/Hired Thugs
Mar-2023 Attacks on Sesay Kumbamuah, Town Chief JueJuah Town Aggravated Assaults, Hooliganism Simeon Taylor, Others Unknown

.

By Wonder Koryenen Freeman, CFCS, LLM, MBA. WK Freeman is a Liberian professional, a trade & investment attorney, forensic accountant, and financial crimes expert, currently residing in New York, USA. He’s passionate about economic justice, accountable governance, rule of law and economic development. He can be reached at wonderrkfreeman@gmail.com

smartnews
Smart News Liberia is an online news outlet and a product of Smart Media Group Inc. Our website, smartnewsliberia.com, covers a broad spectrum of news content. For inquiries or information, you can reach us at 0777425285 or 0886946925, or email us at smartnewsliberia@gmail.com or info@smartnewsliberia.com.

LATEST DEVELOPMENT

THE SENATE’S EXTRAVAGANCE AMID ECONOMIC DESPAIR

The recent Senate retreat in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County,...

LIBERIA’S LEGAL SYSTEM UNDER SIEGE: THE UNPUNISHED CRIMES OF MARIA LUYKEN

In October 2020, the Criminal Court ‘B’ at the...

COMMUNICATIONS MISHAP: A SIGNIFICANT EMBARRASSMENT TO THE PRESIDENCY

The recent debacle surrounding the Unity Party government's conflicting...

COMMENTARY

NO, SPEAKER KOFFA, I DISAGREE WITH THE DEFENSE OF LAWMAKERS

By Wondah L. Jah In a recent public statement, Grand...

COMMEMORATING THE 80TH ANNIVERSARY OF D-DAY: A DEFINING MOMENT IN HISTORY

Eighty years ago, on June 6, 1944, the course...

THERE SHOULD BE NO BIG DEAL WHEN A GOVERNMENT DOES WHAT IT WAS ELECTED FOR…

A Patriot's Diary  With Ekena Nyankun Juahgbe-Droh Wesley  President Joseph Boakai's...

LATEST NEWS

NEARLY 4M USD LIBERIAN PASSPORTS DISCOVERED AT NPA, COVER-UPS BEGIN…

Written and investigated by Ajyei Bonsu, Alexander Nyeneken, Abdulazeez...

STUDENTS DEMAND JUSTICE: SUP’S PETITION EXPOSES CDC ATROCITIES AND CALLS FOR MINING TRANSPARENCY

MONROVIA – The Vanguard Student Unification Party (SUP) of...

Share post:

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

OPINION

ELEVATING THE AG BIBLE COLLEGE TO A UNIVERSITY: A MILESTONE ACHIEVEMENT

By Jacob N.B. Parley After many years of successful preaching...

THE DILEMMA OF PRESIDENTIAL SUPREMACY IN LIBERIA: EXAMINING THE BALANCE OF POWER

By Dr. Clarence R. Pearson, Sr. Superior presidency is the...

LACK OF TRANSPARENCY IN UP-LED GOVERNMENT’S DEAL RAISES SERIOUS CONCERNS

In a shocking and controversial move, the Unity Party...

THE PERILS OF PRAISE SINGING: HOW JOURNALISTIC INTEGRITY IS ESSENTIAL FOR ACCOUNTABILITY IN LIBERIA

Journalists play a crucial role in holding public officials...

THE GALLERY

spot_imgspot_img

MORE ARTICLES

spot_imgspot_img

MORE NEWS

LATEST DEVELOPMENT NEWS

LATEST CRIME NEWS

Share via
Copy link