Pres. Weah Condemns Cape Mount Violence, But…

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President George M. Weah has strongly condemned a reported act of political violence which took place in Porkpar District, Grand Cape Mount County, ahead of Tuesday’s Senatorial elections. The President said the government will not condone such violent action by any group of citizens and political party.

   He was referring to reports that a convoy belonging to the opposition CPP Senatorial candidate in Grand Cape Mount County, Simeon Taylor, came under attack and two of his vehicles set ablaze after a tussle ensued between rival supporters of political parties.

   President Weah emphasized that elections is about the exercise of people’s democratic rights and should be void of any kind of violence. He called on all political parties and their leaders to encourage their respective partisans and supporters to conduct themselves in a peaceful manner during this campaigning period, while urging that peace and stability is paramount to the sustenance of the country’s democracy.

   “There is no need for violence at a time when our country heads to a crucial election period which would solidify our democratic credentials,” the Liberian Leaders stressed. The President then warned that the Government will not hesitate in bringing to book any group of individuals who engages in acts of violence during and after the upcoming elections.

   However, the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) has sharply reacted to what it described as unprovoked attacked by the Coalition for Democratic Change (CPP), and called on Liberia’s international partners, who spent billions of dollars and shed blood to restore peace to the country, to take note of these “state-sponsored” attacks.

a release from the Collaborating Political Parties (CPP) has noted that, on the evening hours of December 5, 2020 the CPP candidate in Grand Cape Mount County, Simeon Boima Taylor, along with members of the campaign team, including Bob Sheriff, were viciously attacked by supporters of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) in Bambala Town, Porkpa District. “The CDC thugs set ablaze two vehicles belonging to the CPP campaign team, the home of Hon. Bob Sheriff and damaged other properties of CPP supporters. The unprovoked attack, which was planned by CDC executives in the county was carried out in the full view of state securities. Mr. Simeon Taylor and team ran to the bushes for safety of their lives from where they arrived in Monrovia at 4:45 a.m. Sunday morning. Getting Simeon and Team to safety was of utmost concern to the CPP,” the CPP release claimed.

    The CPP said it has remained calm and peaceful throughout the conduct of the campaign, despite series of provocations from the CDC. “We continue to respect the laws while the CDC is continuously violating every laws with the intent of degenerating the country back into conflict.

    “We, in the strongest of terms, condemn this unprovoked attack and demand the authority to bring to justice those responsible for such horrible attack. The CPP continues to avoid engaging into confrontations not because we are weak, but because we hold dearly the peace we all enjoy and are doing everything to ensure that that peace is preserved despite incessant provocations from the CDC and their hooligans.”

    The release continued, “The CPP would like to draw the attention of Liberia’s international partners, who spent billions of dollars and shed blood to restore peace to our country, to these state-sponsored attacks. We would like to remind the government that Liberia slide into 14 years of brutal uncivil conflicts because of these same vices that they are now perpetrating against the opposition and peaceful citizens. At some point in time, the people will rise up to protect themselves since the state has now resulted to hooliganism and thuggish behavior.”

   In a related development, the United Nations in Liberia, ECOWAS, the EU Delegation and the Embassies of the EU member States (France, Germany, Ireland and Sweden), the Embassy of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Embassy of the United States of America say they appreciate and share the profound values Liberians hold for peaceful and democratic processes and protection of human rights.

   “We have invested heavily and worked strenuously alongside Liberians from all political parties and all walks of life to promote peace, security and democratic institutions in this country. We deplore the incidence of violence in Grand Cape Mount yesterday, including the burning of cars and looting and burning of a house, and are certain that the vast majority of Liberians would wish to disassociate themselves from such acts. In this regard, we fully support the statement this morning by President George Manneh Weah condemning the violence and calling for political partisans and their leaders to conduct themselves peacefully,” the foreign missions’ joint statement read.

   According to the joint statement, “There must be a full investigation of incidences of violence, including yesterday’s, and all those found responsible must be held accountable. Law enforcement agencies must be granted sufficient resources to carry out their work, including the provision of security to political candidates and polling sites. We recall commitments stakeholders made in the Code of Conduct to ensure a peaceful and transparent electoral process. We call on all parties to renounce the use of provocative language and dissemination of misinformation and falsehoods that only promote political tensions, divisiveness and violence, and risk the progress Liberia has continuously demonstrated since 2005. We further call on political leaders and electoral candidates to pursue any disputes through peaceful means and dialogue, in accordance with the law.

   “International partners are following closely Liberia’s adherence to the rule of law and its advancement of peace and democracy. We look forward to witnessing the voting process on December 8, and support Liberian civil society observation and monitoring initiatives as well. We remain confident in the strong commitment of the Liberian people to peace, stability and development, and continue dedicating our support to advance these essential goals.”

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