The security apparatus of Nimba County, backed by United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), on April 17 commenced an exercise considered as “confidence building” along the bordering towns with La Cote d’Ivoire.
It was part of their duty to foster security and confidence among the locals.
The patrol brought together scores of officers representing every security sector, including the Liberia National Police, the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and the National Security Agency (NSA). They were backed by the UNMIL Ghana Battalion (Ghanbatt) in Nimba.
The purpose of the parade was to encourage the citizens to have confidence in the security officers assigned within their locality and report to them any information that has the potential to cause insecurity or which could be helpful in fighting crime.
Lawlessness is very common in Nimba County, with the citizens frequently in the habit of taking the law into their own hands.
In late February, an angry mob from WeaBeeplay Town stormed the Buutuo Police Station, over powered the officers on duty, took away a murder suspect in custody there and brutally hacked him to death for his alleged killing of their relative.
Eleven of the perpetrators are still at large, while two have been imprisoned, awaiting trial. But the citizens whose relative was brutalized during the incident appear to be losing confidence in the security due to the long delay in arresting the 11.
The patrol first stopped in Frolay Town, the home of the February mobs’ victim where the citizens told the patrol team of their frustrations with the police for failing to properly handle the case almost two months following the incident.
“If we were violent people, we would have revenged all those we arrested with motorbikes and by this time the situation would be quite different,” one angry citizen told the patrol team.
However, the head of the team, Police Superintendent Morris Teamah assured the citizens of Frolay that the LNP will do all it can to bring the perpetrators to justice. He thanked them for remaining calm and respecting the rule of law.
The security apparatus in Nimba began their first confidence building patrol In November 2013 to build rapport with the locals and foster trust and confidence in the security.