The unauthorized use of military uniforms by civilians in Liberia can no longer be allowed to go on, and civilians are warned not to misuse them, the Defense Ministry declared in a statement yesterday in Monrovia.
“The proliferation of unauthorized individuals wearing military apparels has been observed as a grave concern,” the statement said.
The statement, signed by Assistant Defense Minister for Public Affairs, David K. Dahn added, “Given the porosity of the combination of wearing of military apparels by unauthorized individuals who are not sworn military personnel, it is making it increasingly difficult to authenticate actual military from non-military personnel.
“In an effort to avoid any misrepresentation on the credibility of active duty military personnel, the Ministry of National Defense henceforth advise the public against the sale, distribution and wearing of any combination of military attire.”
The statement said military personnel in uniform within civilian settings are authorized to do so.
“In order to verify the identity of our military personnel who may be wearing uniform among civilians, the Military Police is authorized to ensure that anyone wearing uniform is properly identified as bona fide AFL personnel,” it said, adding, “Non-personnel wearing military uniforms will forego on site, or at the discretion of the Military Police to exercise such responsibility, that statutory uniform, which only authorized personnel are allowed to wear.”
The statement called for the cooperation of the public as there will be absolutely no exception to the Ministry of Defense directive.
However, the statement was silent on the perennial use of a military uniform by Rep. Acarous Gray of District #8 (see photo).
A defense source made no comment on Rep. Gray’s use of military attire, when clarification was sought by the Daily Observer.