Kakata Authorities Clash With Commercial Drivers

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Kakata City Corporation deflated over 100 commercial car tires for 'illegal parking'.

By Patrick C.M. Kollie

Kakata City was on the brink of chaos over the weekend when commercial drivers rattled with authorities of the City Corporation (KCC) in reaction to the corporation’s alleged order to deflate tires of vehicles that were parked along the sidewalk of the city’s streets.

Commercial drivers, who had gone home Friday night after their daily routines, met their tires deflated the following morning on alleged orders of KCC.

The corporation’s latest action follows series of meetings with transport officials and warnings to motorists, especially commercial drivers, not to use the main streets of Kakata as parking lots.

Over 100 car tires were deflated by the Kakata City Police during the melee that ensued on Saturday in the wake of the order.

Many of the affected drivers resorted to blocking the free passage of other vehicles and even the pedestrians, throwing objects in the city center.

The situation was later calmed following the prompt intervention of officers of the Liberia National Police, who aborted the melee between the KCC and disgruntled drivers.

Richard Kolleh, a commercial driver, described the KCC’s action as “arbitrary and illegal.” Kollie said KCC was wrong to puncture their car tires, especially during the night hours when owners of the vehicles were not present.

Angry commercial drivers struggle to move their vehicles whose tires were deflated by the Kakata City authorities.

Another driver, one Solomon, said Kakata City Mayor Emmanuel Goll’s action to order city police to deflate their car tires without prior notice, clearly indicates that he’s not qualified to manage the affairs of the city, and that his behavior is totally against President George Weah Pro-poor agenda.

Solomon said he therefore wants the President remove Mayor Goll if the government wants to achieve its pro-poor development agenda in Margibi County.

However, Mayor Goll defended his position and promised that any driver that dares to violate, will feel the weight of the corporation.

The chairman of the National Civil Society Movement of Liberia Margibi County Branch, Edward L. Travis, described the Kakata City Corporation action as illegal and said the corporation overacted, stressing that if the affected drivers were not mature people, the situation would have degenerated into uncontrollable fist fight that could greatly undermine the hard earned peace of the city.

He condemned the act and called on both the city corporation and transport unions including the county  administration to resolve the matter through dialogue with the affected parties.

However, the city mayor said he gave the directive in collaboration with local administration, including the police, therefore, therefore he does not regret his actions.

Authors

4 COMMENTS

  1. Unauthorized parking is wrong. Usually in the US, an unauthorized motorist may discover that his or her car has been ticketed or towed. But deflating a motorist’s tires for having parked illegally is unheard of. I guess it’s the Liberian way.

    It is also equally wrong to restrict parking when there is no where else to park. The net result for deflating tires of commercial vehicles is chaotic. There is absolute certainty that customers who wanted to travel out of Kakata the next day were unable to do so because there weren’t any cars available. Market men and women may have encountered problems as well. Then what’s about those who were hoping to go to the hospital into the city? What a travesty?

    The answer to this is simple: It’s time for parking lots to be constructed. Parking lots that will charge at least a buck for overnight parking. Liberia’s population is increasing. Contingency plans for the country’s fast-growing population is an absolute must.

    It’s about time that we had crawled out of the third world.

    • Can not agree less to your assertion of the above Liberian issue. Hope the Mayor of Kakata reads your assertion on this matter.

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