CoP Rejects ECOWAS Plea for One-Day Protest Action

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Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has already cited the Council of Patriots (left) to appear before Justice-in-Chambers, Joseph Nagbe (right), for a conference to show reasons why a stay order should or should not be placed on the June 7 protests.

Confirmed reports reaching the Daily Observer say the Council of Patriots (CoP), organizers of the planned June 7 “peaceful protest” have rejected pleas by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) delegation to restrict the protests to a single day.

According to insider sources, a member of the Liberian delegation to the ECOWAS parliament (name withheld), who according to sources, virtually lives in Abuja, has been acting behind the scenes with the intention to derail the June 7 protests.

Additionally, according to sources, the said individual had attempted to sit in the meeting between the Council of Patriots and the ECOWAS delegation, however, his attempt was rebuffed by the CoP, who insisted that his presence in the meeting would have necessitated a walkout of the CoP delegation.

Reluctantly, according to sources, the Liberian member of the ECOWAS parliament was forced to leave the meeting hall upon insistence of the CoP.

Further, according to sources, the CoP was asked to disclose what were their demands, but they responded saying the CoP being an amalgamation of several groups, had varying demands, some of which have already been publicly disclosed. They noted further that on the day of the protest, and probably in the succeeding days the protesters, will make known their full list of demands.

In a related development, it has been revealed that threats by Attorney Arthur Johnson to petition the Supreme Court to place a stay order on the June 7 protests have been actualized as the Supreme Court has already cited the parties to appear before Justice-in-Chambers, Joseph Nagbe, for a conference to show reasons why a stay order should or should not be placed on the June 7 protests.

But a source close to the CoP, speaking to the Daily Observer, said the petition is an insidious attempt to quash the right of the people to freely assemble and consult on the common good, as the Constitution provides. Continuing, he said while the Supreme Court is the highest arbiter of justice in the land, it derives its power from the people and therefore lacks the power or legal right to prevent an assembly of the people in whom the Constitution says, all power is inherent.

Therefore, according to the source, the CoP is more likely than not to ignore the citation from the Supreme Court, because in the opinion of the CoP, the Court is allowing itself to be dragged into a matter of a political nature that is non-justiciable.

At this stage, it remains unclear how the matter is going to play out, should protest organizers fail to honor the citation from Justice-in-Chambers, Joseph Nagbe.

Legal pundits say the Court may try to enforce compliance by issuing a Writ of Contempt on protest organizers, and ultimately, a Writ of Arrest.

But given the very short time left to June 7, and given the very politically charged atmosphere, enforcing a Writ of arrest for Contempt could prove to be a very daunting challenge.

Meanwhile, reports say, Monrovia residents have been stocking up on food and other basic necessities in anticipation of a prolonged shut down of commercial activities in the city as a result of the June 7 protests, which is expected to draw a large following.

14 COMMENTS

  1. Unfortunately, each and every one of Liberia’s 3 branches of government (Executive, Judiciary, and Legislative) comprises elements that exhibit high levels of ineptitude.

    *** Given Article 17 of the revised Liberian constitution ***

    Why would any qualified member of the Judiciary Branch even consider any case that opposes The Right of The Liberian People to exercise their freedom of Peaceful Assemble?

    Oh, I almost forgot. Dortu-Siboe DOG has a Narrative for this question too.

    I would like to remind the Justice(s) and anyone who presents an obstacle that would impede the will of The People to protest during this time of national economic hardship; such individual(s) shall be in direct violation of ARTICLE 17 of the Liberian constitution.

    And the penalty may include removal from office through the legal framework of the constitution (impeachment) — perpetuated by The People of Liberia.

    • Article 17 gives the people the “right to assemble..in orderly and peaceable manner”, BUT it does not, I repeat, it does not give them the right to stop other people from moving FREELY throughout Liberia.

      In other words, if your “peaceful protest” becomes a major nuisance (disturbing the public’s peace!), you should be arrested! You will not be allowed to violate the rights of large number of people who are not interested in your so called “peaceful protest”! (see article 13a)!

  2. These protest organizers (COP) are acting unreasonable. ECOWAS should let them (COP) know that, if they (COP) intend to use street protests to advance political change, that ECOWAS, along with the Liberian government, will provide security for only one day, June 7.

    After that day, if your “peaceful protest” becomes a major nuisance (blocking traffic, peace, impeding the free flow of commerce, or stopping productive people from working!), you will be arrested! You will not be allowed to violate the rights of large number of people who are not interested in your “peaceful protest”! (see article 13a of the Liberian Constitution)!

  3. Is this how the Weah’s government will respond to all other future demonstrations throughout its tenure in office?

    I ask this question against the backdrop of all the resources including material, human, and the hosting of international conferences that have already been expended since the June 7 announcement, just to decide the constitutionality of this demonstration. This is child’s play.

    The rights of the people to petition their government for the redress of their grievances cannot be subjected to the whims or caprices of a leader. These rights are an embodiment of the constitution.

    And that is what impels me often time to make the point that whenever we use the term “democracy”, we should be careful of how we associate it with Liberia because its application within the Liberian context is grotesquely contrasting.

    It is sad to mention that the term “democracy” does not come close to the American apotheosis which we have been striving to emulate since our founding but nevertheless, its quest has alluded us for over a century, and it is still alluding us for reasons that have brought us to where we are today.

    This demonstration is only the tip of the iceberg. More will come as there are other stakeholders within the political arena who are demanding equal attention from the government as well. Prominent among them is the group that advocates the setting up of a World Crime Court.

    Cadence, which is a beat or pulse, is to music as a demonstration is to the rhythmic flow of democracy. Demonstration is the essence of democracy. And so, what does Weah prefer? Does he prefer diverting his political capital in an endlessly futile battle against demonstrations and thus bastardizing his Pro-Poor Agenda? Or does he prefer focusing on the improvement of the quality of life for the average Liberian?

    I think the latter will be good because in the end, Liberians will say of him as they are saying of Ellen now, “Even though Weah’s administration was not perfect, but at least he achieved a few meaningful goals.”

  4. The Collaborative Opposition Political Parties and their COP henchmen are fooling themselves; they have no say on the course of June 7, hence can’t stop it. Allegedly, an unholy alliance of disgruntled political elites, biased oligarchs, foreign covert aggression agents, vengeful zealots, and a maddening crowd of anti-establishment elements are in the driver’s seat.

  5. Its their rights. Let them Demonstrate. Follow the Constitution.

  6. Of course, we must “Follow the constitution” and Article 13 (a) entrusts “safeguarding of public security, public order…” to the government. Our problem is that elites are so consumed by their own parochial interests that don’t give a damn for the vast majority powerless who will eventually be victims of any eventual chaos.

    • What would be the rationale for chaos, Mr. Sylvester Moses? If the demonstrators will march freely and unobstructed from wherever as a start, to wherever as an end, then one wonders how will that erupt into chaos all of a sudden? Or are you and fellow provocateurs the ones stoking violence for that demonstration? If I may remind you and fellow diabolics therefore, that records are replete with tense and violent-prune electioneering all over Africa, but that did not stop those elections from being conducted. While such realities are regrettable, that people have shed blood or even died in exercising a simple democratic right, which ought not to be the case, we hope those of you enjoying the current mismanagement in Liberia, and who are doing everything to sustain that mess, would have yourselves and cluelss sponsors to blame in the event of any fallout, be it on June 7th, or anytime thereafter. After all the people are simply responding to a condition unleashed on them by a bunch of incompetent fools calling themselves leaders. Pass that up the chain.

  7. It is possible that COP will stay the protest until the Weah leaves or steps down as a president because he has failed miserably.

  8. Looking Back to the 144 Months…and talk.

    I call them the COUNCIL OF HYPOCRITES. When EJS came to power in 2005, the US rate was LD 55 to 1 USD. When she left, it was LD 160 to 1 US. She a ” trained economist”, she should have held it in place.Her government was the most funded government in the history of Liberia next to the PRC’s Goverment of the 80s.

    Over the 144 months in office, US Dollar rate soar to 100%. The regime was marred by highten rate of corruptions. An increase in legislators and senators salaries twice. She even made a statement: “we accept corruption, to give peace a chance”. There was no shortage of individuals disappearance cases, which up to now, hasn’t been solved. Corruption cases on the docket that up to present have not been adjudicated.

    The HYPOCRITES are talking about War Crime Court. For the 144 months on Capital Hill or in the Executive Mansion, the past regime was not query about any autrocity committed during the 14 years of carnage. Even though the “mother of all autrocities” was the president.

    Other talked about regime change…..I laugh. Do we want to be like Somalia in the 90s. An attempt to get this government out, it will result to tribal and clan CHAOS.

    I m not a CDCian, neither do I support any wrong doing by government officials. However; mass demonstration to paralyze this Governent is not the best way out. The fact here is, those heading the protest are fail, greedy former officials who want state power at all cost. Some of them are talking about article 17….let’s read articles 13 also.

    Let’s be carefull.

  9. Great analysis….but, if you say that Madame Sirleaf is the “mother of all atrocities”, then who is the “father of all atrocities”?? Charles Taylor??

  10. OK, brother Scott, I have seen the back and forth about who’s is the biggest ring leader in this Liberian crisis. Let agree that Taylor is the biggest boss in this whole thing. Is he not serving time behind bars?

    I m not a lawyer, nor do I know anything regarding law. I have been hearing in the past, from esquires that the law book said “he who is aiding and abiding a criminal, is himself a criminal.

    Our problem in Liberia and developing nations is that we allow people to rebrand us. This means, they tell us who is wrong, who is right, even if the evidence are glaring all because we cannot feed, or provide for ourselves.

    EJS……by facts, never wouldn’t have been president in Liberia. Outside agents play a major role including our own Liberian people, gave her the highest office of the land to her over the corpses of 400,000 of her county men that she was instrumental in sending to their early graves.

    If Taylor is sitting behind bars, EJS is running around signing book deals, receiving Nobel Prize. I m one those Liberian that finds it hard to swallow.

    Taylor broked rank with her based on greed and ideology. If Taylor had agree with her, both of them wouldn’t have had a split.

    I m only saying, Liberians have to be very carefully.
    EJS and the NPFL told us that Samuel Doe was the problem. Doe is dead since 29 years ago, we are still polirized and are at the verge of going after one another once more at a 4th quadrant level. Just look at the ring leaders of the so-called CoP individually. Non of them have substance, but are preying on the massive illiteracy rate in the country.

    The analysis that Mr. Flomo Domah made, is one of the best so far. I m not in politics, nor do I supporting any political group, something I have been accused of in the past, but I want peace in Liberia. I m just a free thinker.

  11. I hold no exclusive briefs of any political party. My concern right now is the President, who is in power, and what seemingly appears like his inability to deliver on the public good. Leaders go and leaders come, but Liberia will always remain.

    In my neutrality, I will offer no emotional attachment to Weah. I did not offer any to Ellen, Taylor, or Doe in the past; and, neither will I do it now.

    Quite frankly if people keep dwelling on the past and lose focus on the present, national, and astronomical challenges, then we are surely heading on a road to nowhere.

    One thought process that has seeped into the Liberian psyche about the present administration is that ills persisted in the past, and therefore this administration should be shielded from its wrongdoings. For example: Information Minister Nagbe re-enforced this thought process just a few weeks ago, when he stated that other governments in the world are unjustifiably transferring donor funds, and so it is kosher to practice the same corrupt act in our country.

    I do not subscribe to this nonsense because it is a recipe for disaster and an outright cop-out. Was Weah not elected to correct these kinds of vices in government?

    Few exceptions exist which I hold dearly to my heart concerning the past governments, is that those officials of the past eras, who funded and participated in the commission of heinous crimes against humanity should be brought to justice.

    And as it has been a rumor, the only obstacle in the way of this process, is for the Weah’s administration to signal the okay. Why does he remain oblivious to this issue? Where does Weah derive his fears, when in fact, his supporters say that he was never an accessory or an accomplice to any of the atrocities?

    Another exception that I hold dearly to my heart is the missing 16-billion LSD in which as it is alleged, Ellen’s past government also played a role.

    And last the $25-million dollars debacle, which is exclusively the making of Weah’s government. How does this heartless thievery make his government any better than the past governments?

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