Liberia: G. Gedeh Superintendent Accused of ‘Attempted Murder’

Rep. Gwion (right) has accused Grand Gedeh County Superintendent Kai Farley (left) of a mob attack, which almost led to his death.   

.... “It was total hell. When we got outside, a  member of Superintendent Farley’s loyalists rushed to stab me with a knife,”  Rep. Gwion.

Gedeh County  District  #1 Representative, Erol Gwion, has accused the county Superintendent Kai Farley of a mob attack.

Rep. Gwion accused Superintendent Farley of masterminding the mob action, which almost got him wounded. He claimed that while he and his staff miraculously managed to escape, the attack however had the propensity to inflict serious harm; one of the attackers nearly stabbed him with a knife.

Complaining, Superintendent Farley -- Rep. Gwion informed his colleagues that he and five of his staff were  “gruesomely attacked”, when they accompanied the Minister of Internal Affairs, Varney Sirleaf, to discuss matters related to the disappearance of Alfred Dunner on Smile FM in Zwedru, the capital of the county. 

“When the Minister began to lay the premise of the discussion on air, Superintendent Farley arrived in the studio, followed by dozens of non-security personnel onboard the Liberia Immigration Service (LIS) Border Patrol ‘Unit 1’ vehicle and deployed in the compound of the entity. Loyal to the Superintendent and on his orders, the men were fortified with guns, sticks, iron pipes, knives, and other weapons,” Rep. Gwion wrote in his communication.

“As they disembarked the LIS vehicle in the presence of joint security officers,” he added, “they immediately turned off the light on the porch of the Radio Station, thus rendering the entire environment insecure. 

“They then launched a physical attack on my security and other staffers. We heard multiple gunfires outdoors, where we learned that an 18-year-old boy living in the vicinity had been injured from two AK-47 bullets, said to be fired by LIS officers. That boy is said to be receiving medical attention at the Martha Tubman Memorial Hospital in Zwedru,” he said.

Dunner, who works for the National Elections Commission as a Logistics Officer and later, Election Magistrate was last seen on May 3, in Janzon, Niao Clan, which is about 25 kilometers away from Zwedru, the county capital.

He had gone to Niao Clan, seeking traditional treatment, but ended up disappearing mysteriously. Since then, the police have been searching for him without any good result.

His disappearance generated a huge public outcry as well as tribal conflict after his kinsmen came under attack by some citizens of the Niao Clan.  Dunner's brother has linked his disappearance to his unwillingness to manipulate the November 16, 2021 representative by-election in the county, despite pressure from notable individuals and politicians.

Rep. Gwion won the election in question on the ticket of the Liberia Restoration Party (LRP), defeating the candidate from the governing Coalition for Democratic Change  — for whom Dunner’s brother is alleging that the request was made for cheating. Rev. Bill Dunner said that before his brother's abduction, he had gone into hiding numerous times due to threats from individuals who wanted him to alter the election results.

Meanwhile, Rep. Gwion disclosed that as shots were being fired, Superintendent Farley instructed his boys to shut down and halt the broadcast, at the same time,  turning off the studio light.

This, the lawmaker said, happened in front of Farley's boss, the Minister of Internal Affairs, who was on air discussing the matter. He said when they stepped out of the studio, a local journalist and other bystanders' accounts have it that Farley ordered his boys saying, “Any [motherf*cker] that will try it… y’all waste them.”

“It was total hell. We were under siege. However, the Minister insisted that I come along with him onboard his vehicle to escape the scene. When we got outside to do just that, a member of Superintendent Farley’s loyalists rushed to stab me with a knife,” Rep. Gwion disclosed. 

“It would have been very tragic for me, had the guy with the knife not been warded off by my COS who eventually sustained multiple injuries in the process.  He had to run for his life,” the Grand Gedeh lawmaker disclosed. 

In his communication, the lawmaker indulged his colleagues, to have the Superintendent be made to appear before the House to defend his action as well as the Commander of the Liberia Immigration Service detail in Grand Gedeh County, Andy Russ Gborley.

However, Speaker Chambers seized the motion proffered by Rep. Isaac Roland that communication  be sent to the Committees on Internal Affairs, National Security and Good Governance to report in two weeks.

Several lawmakers including Reps. Rustonlyn Dennis, Julie Wiah, Vicent Willie, Richard Koon, Thomas Goshua, Samuel Kogar, Clarence Garr, and others, said the communication  should have been opened for discussion, because  an “attack  on one is an attack on all.”