Vandals May Face Prosecution

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A torn CDC poster

– For tearing down campaign posters

Less than three days after authorities at the National Elections Commission (NEC) declared campaign officially opened, unidentified individuals have reportedly torn down posters of Vice President Joseph Boakai and his running mate Emmanuel Nuquay on 24th Street, Sinkor and other places around Monrovia.

Also torn down were posters of opposition Liberty Party leader Charles Walker Brumskine and his running mate Harrison Karnwea.

On walls along 24th Street in Sinkor are scores of logos of political parties and their candidates’ photos on display. Posters include leaders of the Coalition for Democratic Change Senator George Weah and running mate Jewel Howard Taylor. Posters bearing the images of Weah and Taylor were also partly damaged.

Though it was discovered that the 24th Street posters of All Liberian Party’s (ALP) Benoni Urey and his running mate were unscathed; however, at some areas they were also reportedly removed.

A Liberty Party poster also torn

The Daily Observer was told that the removal or tearing of posters of political leaders was due to the euphoria surrounding the beginning of the political campaign process, a time when many partisans express their excitement by doing the wrong thing.

Though there are no laws governing the tearing of campaign posters, sources at the Liberia National Police (LNP) told this newspaper that anyone caught could face prosecution for tampering with and damaging other people’s property.

“We encourage all partisans to be mindful of acts that have the propensity to draw out negative responses that could lead to problems in this election period,” a police source said.

Residents in the area could neither confirm nor deny reports that the action was deliberate, but said campaign period is one that has many faces.

“People vote for people close to their hearts so no one should worry or make any fuss about someone removing or tearing someone’s picture,” a resident told the Daily Observer.

The act has been committed against the backdrop of pieces of advice from the government and foreign partners for Liberians to ensure a peaceful campaign period leading to the elections.

UP standard bearer Boakai’s poster taken down and trampled upon

When UP Chairman Wilmot Paye was contacted about the unfolding event, he said: “Ok, we will continue to raise it peacefully.” Also contacted was Henry Boyd Flomo, NEC’s communications director, who said vandalizing posters of political parties is prohibited and illegal.

For the past few days, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and international partners, including the United Nations, African Union, ECOWAS and U.S. Embassy officials have cautioned Liberians to preserve the country’s peace by avoiding any activity that will spark up violence in the ongoing campaign and pending elections.

At the recent opening of the fourth semester of the Young Political Leadership School on July 31, US Ambassador Christine Elder admonished the youth to conduct themselves peacefully during and after the coming elections.

The United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary General, Farid Zarif, the African Union Liaison Office in Monrovia and ECOWAS also cautioned Liberians not to do anything to undermine the ongoing process.

Meanwhile, on the first day of official campaigning, ALP political leader Benoni Urey was heard on the ‘Costa Show’ calling for campaigns to be peaceful and the need for Liberians to choose the best candidate for the presidency.

16 COMMENTS

  1. The very political leaders are saying ugly things to each other in the press, what do you expect the average Liberian to do? I want to believe hate messages is responsible for what is going on. Liberians are just hard to deal with. Election’s time is a time of looking back and deciding what happens in the future. If we start this show with hate messages and behaviors in the street by the time we get to election’s day, someone will decide for us behind the scene.

  2. These are war babies who have not been rehabilitated. They only saw death and destruction for 15 years. Rape, murder, destruction of property and lawlessness are all part of their mindset. This election will be marred by violence between the youths of these political parties. Liberian People please prepare for and protect yourselves against violence. 22 people will kill for this one President business. Please beware. The young people with no jobs, no education and no future will turn Liberia upside down within the next few months. Tearing down posters is just the beginning.

  3. This is actually alarming, but I can promise you that nothing is going to be done about it, because Madam President is known for pushing legal matters under the carpet. I may be an ardent supporter of this regime, but I do detest The President’s inability to allow the Justice System to punish the breakers of the law. However, I am of the conviction, that the Nigerian Troops will handle some of those issues appropriately.

  4. Who brought Nigerian troops to bully our people into submission? Is it the same Ellen Johnson Sirleaf again who wants to plant a leader on the Liberian people? What happened to our own army, the Liberian army? Is our army not clothed with the authority to maintain the peace? Is this (bringing in a foreign army) not meddling in the internal affairs of a sovereign state? Do we send our army to Nigeria during their elections? Ellen Johnson Sirleaf must be careful here. This is high treason. Bringing in a foreign army to beat and maim our people during elections will not be tolerated and those responsible(Ellen, Boima, Sawyer, and others) will have to answer to this treasonable act. Few stupid people always lead Liberia down the wrong path.

  5. The first person who started violence against our people is President Ellen
    Johnson-Sirleaf with her Nigerian troops; or is it former President of Nigeria
    Obassanjo, pretending to do good for Liberia or to protect his chicken
    business in Liberia? That is the problem with Liberian leaders. Except for late
    President Samuel K. Doe who never brought foreign troops into the country,
    the rest leaders always never trusted their own Army, Police and other para
    military personnel to do their jobs, only foreign troops. Why Nigerian troops
    this time?

    That is one of the reasons why the incoming administration must go after
    Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to give account of and pay for all misrule in Liberia.
    Look at Brazil, they people are going after their president there to account
    for and pay for his or her misrule. Liberian people were blindfolded and
    elected Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to govern and fix those things that she
    destroyed during her war but not Bankrupt their financial institutions
    among is the Liberia Oil Company in which she sent her son Robert who
    Bankrupted the Company and Ellen took responsibility for it. That was not
    the reason why they elected her. So let her or make her to pay for it.
    Simple as that!

    The partners United States and others are sitting down allowing the President
    Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf causing problem for the elections; her Code of Conduct
    and the foreign troops from Nigeria. These are just to offend the Liberian people
    to resort to violence and other behaviors to undermine the peace and tranquility.
    Why they are not talking to remove those her wicked acts?

    • P.T; The Pros of the EJS administration far outweighs everything else. She won two teams of the Presidency of Liberia. There must be something good about Lady Sirleaf. Bet you! There is no such thing as a perfect administration.

  6. Mr.P. Allison Tarlue, Sr. ,
    So what you think should be done, or what happen if the president do not do anything and something go wrong during the election?

  7. When young Liberians behave rude or do criminal acts, people always attribute it to war. The war has been over since 20 years plus. People caught in any criminal acts should be punish according to the law of the Republic of Liberia. To tear down campaign posters is very undemocratic and people should desist from it immediately.

  8. My apologies, but in my mind, our past is a complete nightmare, our present catastrophic, and our future is hopeless.

    As a one time politician, I have come to realize that only two groups of people can succeed in Liberian politics. On the one hand are those individuals who are egotistic and unconscious about the existence of others. In short, I m talking about the heartless people. And on the other hand are the ones I refer to as the criminal masterminds. These are people whose only purpose is to use and exploit the people. I have since left politics because I just can’t fit in, at least for now.

    This is not to say that there is no good person in Liberia. In fact, the good people are more than the bad ones but you agree with me that for some reason, the bad people usually out shine the good people. For this very reason, the good people are bullied into silence.

    In order to solve Liberia’s problems, we must start from the beginning. We must do a complete analysis of the past. Yes, we can never change the past but holding people accountable for what they have done to this country will go a long way in driving this nation to a better future. I have not met anyone who believes that the over 250,000 of our people who died during our civil war deserve to die or their death has no impact on us as a nation. I hold the view that in order to sustain our peace, just must be served. The concept that “let by gone be by gone” is a deadly precedent that will hunt us in the future. The message must be clear: Justice is the foundation on which reconciliation is built. It is a disgrace to see people who have destroyed our lives boasting of the things they did to us during the war and after. What are we heading….?

    To be honest with you my fellow colleagues, the tearing down of posters are just part of the many different symptoms of a nation with a protracted illness. So while we thinking about addressing these symptoms, we must not in any way disregard the cause.

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