The persistent calls for the establishment of economic and war crimes court in the country received a major boost on Thursday, August 15, 2019, when Monrovia City Mayor, Jefferson T. Koijee, added his voice to those who are in the vanguard of the advocacy. Koijee is also the chairman for the Youth League of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC).
To further push for the establishment of the court, he said it would address impunity wherein perpetrators would account for their deeds.
Mayor Koijee made the statement at a news conference where he promised to engage President George Weah to support the establishment of war and economic crimes court.
“There should be no room for those, who committed crimes in this country to go scot-free, because as a student leader then, I advocated for the establishment of this court, and today, I am one of the country’s stakeholders, I still feel there is a need that the court is established in the country,” Koijee said.
He added, “Again, if I have the opportunity to engage President Weah on the establishment of the court, I will tell him out-rightly that this is something that needs to be done now. We are not prepared to return to those dark days… where people suffered and lives were lost.”
Koijee said that his advocacy for the establishment of the court during the days as a student will continue at the higher levels, even in his position as a mayor. He said his support is due to the many things that occurred during the long crisis in the country.
“This is something that even encouraged me to join the CDC….because there were many or too many impunity in the country. During the hearing at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), we took to the streets and engaged stakeholders to ensure that the war and economic crimes court is established,” Mayor Koijee said.
He said that there were days in the country that people were afraid to voice out the truth “even at the TRC hearing, but I was of the many other students, who used various platforms to call for the establishment of the court.”
“Even in our own government, if people are reportedly involved into economic crimes, they should be prosecuted. I will not change my position even as a mayor today,” Koijee assured.
In another development, Mayor Koijee has lauded Monrovians for their support to Monrovia City Corporation (MCC) in recent time.
With their support, he promised to continuously rely on residents to keep the city clean and green.
“We are grateful to World Bank for the initial support, including the trucks they provided to the MCC. It has enhanced our capacity, and ensures that the city is cleaned. We need to empower the community people, but they, too, need to work with us,” he said.
He said that the MCC has launched a program for 500 “city management workers” or the Zogos (a parlance for the destitute) who will be helping to clean the buckets placed at the various locations.
He said that the Zogos, who will be classified as “city management workers,” will wear uniforms to identify them as such, “and so we call on the public to give them their utmost respect while they are contributing to the cleaning of the city.”