LNP Recruiting 8000 for 2017

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The Liberia National Police (LNP) has announced that it will recruit at least 8,000 new officers to boost their numerical strength from the present 4,700 by 2017 to maintain law and order during the presidential and general elections.
Deputy Police Director for Operations (102), Prince B. Mulbah, said the 8,000 officers “would also defend Liberia’s fragile peace,” Director Mulbah disclosed yesterday at the ongoing three-day peace seminar in Monrovia.
The seminar is jointly organized by Liberia Peace Building Office (LPBO) and African Center for Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) under the theme, “Revisiting the Coherence and Coordination Debate; Sustaining Collective Peace-building in Liberia.”
Director Mulbah explained that the LNP has continued to develop and assume a professional and national police force, which is capable of serving and protecting its citizens and foreigners as United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) turns full security responsibility to the Liberian government in 2016.
“For LNP to adequately address and handle the general and presidential elections in 2017, 8,000 well empowered and trained officers will be required to take up assignments across the country,” Director Mulbah told participants during the discussion on the 2017 elections. The UNMIL drawdown, he said, creates a security challenge and the LNP has constituted a transitional working group to facilitate an effective transition plan.
He said since the departure of UNMIL in June of 2013 from Grand Cape Mount County, Logautuo border, Nimba County, and in Grand Bassa County, LNP continues to demonstrate security responsibility. Based on that, Director Mulbah assured the public of LNP’s preparedness to assume full security control despite many challenges.
“We cannot be a partisan police; we have embarked on a contingency plan with relevant institutions to handle the issue of identity crisis. We are working fully with the Liberia Refugee Repatriation, Resettlement Commission (LRRRC) to ensure that this plan is achievable,” he told participants who applauded him.
Director Mulbah said the LNP has established a National Operations Center and also a Crisis Management Center as part of its efforts to ensure the conduct of any violence-free election in the country.
He added that the LNP has formulated a plan to provide public awareness on civil education through community policing. “This is one of the plans arranged to help in reaching out to all communities and increasing public confidence in the LNP.”
Contributing, Rev. Korto Brown, a local cleric outlined challenges the government must overcome to turn over a national democracy government to an elected one.
“We need to focus on the general and presidential elections, which will also show the level of coordination and cohesion in Liberia’s peace. Research shows that Liberia has had about 50 presidential elections and 52 legislative elections and about 18 referendums,” he said.
According to Rev. Brown, Liberians need to avoid promotion of divisiveness and any candidate focusing on divisiveness should not be provided the opportunity to lead.
“We also need to reduce tension come 2017. The National Elections Commission has an important role to play, considering this special movement in the history of Liberia,” he admonished.

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