“Curfew Not A Guarantee for Peace”

Maryland County Senator J. Gbleh-bo Brown

— Senator Gbleh-bo Brown in town hall meeting with Marylanders

By Edward Stemn in Pleebo

In the wake of the imposition of curfew in Maryland County to curtail the protest that has left the home of Speaker Bhofal Chambers burned and other public facilities vandalized, Maryland County Senator, J. Gbleh-bo Brown, has said in a town hall meeting that imposition of a curfew is not a solution to address the agitation of the aggrieved citizens. Instead, he said, justice and total cessation of killings that the county has been noted for, would be the way forward.

Senator Brown stressed that the current situation in the county has continued to destroy its image among the rest of the counties, and the only solution to cooling the temper of the aggrieved citizens now is to institute justice and make the perpetrators to account.

Maryland has been associated with ritual killings for years. Killing for ritual purpose is popularly known as ‘Gboyo’ in Maryland, and reports suggest that this human sacrifice is meant to use the body parts extracted to seek either a prestigious public position or fortune in any form.

Such murderous activities are the apparent requirements of some secret societies that people join to seek advancement in life.  In the case of Mordecial Nyemah, whose body was discovered in a pool of blood recently in Pleebo, our correspondent says his eyes and fingers were extracted. Human parts extracted are reportedly taken to the juju man (witch doctor).

Expressing his condolences to the people during the meeting, Senator Brown said he does not in any way support the destruction of properties as was done to the houses of Speaker Chambers, and no amount of violence can solve a problem.

Nevertheless, he said the imposition of curfew, which apparently not everyone in Harper is observing, does not guarantee that there is total peace in the county in the absence of justice for the families of Nyemah and the victim himself.

“This act of killing people in the county has become a habit and must be brought to an end,” Senator Brown said. “Protest is your constitutional right but it must be exercised in a peaceful manner and not violently.

“Vandalizing public facilities and the burning Speaker Chambers’ home were not the best options to seeking justice, but I also condemn the act of ritualistic killing in the strongest term,” the Senator noted.

Senator Brown, who heads the Senate Committee on Internal Affairs, added that while Liberians are building on the stability of the county with the thought of maintaining peace, “We shouldn’t lose sight of this heinous crime to think people can remain peaceful, but let us go to the bottom to seek justice.

“The county caucus members are committed to making sure that justice is the order of this murder case. We have already spoken to the Justice Minister and the President, and they have assured us of their support in the quest for justice,” Senator Brown told the citizens.

He, therefore, urged Marylanders to exercise restraint and be calm, as the prime suspect will call names of those involved in the murder of Mordecial.

He then applauded the youth and members of the Motorcycle Union for arresting and turning over the suspect to the police.

Senator Brown, while in the county, is expected to hold meetings with joint security, traditional leaders, women, youth and religious leaders.

In a related development, the Assistant Commissioner of Police, Francis Amos Williams, has assured the citizens of Maryland that they will ensure that the peace and the stability of the county are maintained.

Assistant commissioner Williams noted that the presence of the police in the county is not to be at war or conflict with the citizens, but to ensure that the curfew imposed by President Weah is enforced and to employ every step that will curtail violence.

Williams further expressed his deepest regret over the firing of live bullets that he attributed to resistance on the part of the protesters to discontinue their protest action in Pleebo.

The shooting was the cause of the protesters going on the rampage to set ablaze the properties of Speaker Chambers.

According to our correspondent, the group of police officers who entered the county from River Gee went in confrontation with the citizens and announced that the Speaker had sent them to get them off the streets.  Upon hearing the announcement, the protesters became more agitated and decided to march to the Speaker’s home to set all his buildings ablaze.

“Please observe the curfew as it is to regulate movements of people to facilitate the arrest of those hardcore criminals that broke jail as a result of vandalizing the central prison and the police station both in Harper and Pleebo.

“Your cooperation is essential in this process and, with you, we can achieve our goals to restore calm, peace and stability in the county,” Commissioner Williams noted.


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