As the looming trouble in Grand Bassa County deepens, authorities of the county have reportedly accused some prominent citizens of the county of being behind the Aggrieved Bassa Citizens (ABC) who are calling for the immediate resignation of County Superintendent Etweda T. Cooper and Assistant Superintendent for Development Adonie Z. Greaves.
The ABC group wants the current leadership of the county to be immediately unseated for allegedly mismanaging funds intended to kick Ebola out of the county among other funds also intended to develop their devastated county. The amount in question is a staggering US$307,000.
During the second day of the ABC’s protest, on October 9, 2014, members of the group “booed at Superintendent Cooper and shouted loud voices.
Rogue! Rogue!! Rogue!!! When she was attempting to flee the hostility of the ABC demonstrators gathered around her office on that fateful day. Had it not been for the police and other security officers to escort her away, all hell would have broken loose.
Following this, some supporters of the county administration, already in ‘hot water,’ alleged that the Managing Director of the Liberian Petroleum Refining Corporation (LPRC) and Executive Director of the T. Nelson Williams Foundation is one of the staunch supporters of the ABC’s action against the county leadership’s removal from office.
During a press conference held at the offices of the foundation in Buchanan last week, Mr. T. Nelson Williams categorically refuted the allegation leveled against him, describing it as false, misleading and unfounded and intended to tarnish his long built reputation and to discredit his immense contributions to the eradication of the spread of Ebola and the development of our war torn county.
Mr. Williams clarified that at no time has he given the ABC US$1,500 to facilitate the unseating of the current county leadership as had widely claimed by his accusers. He challenged them to prove their allegation to the letter.
Mr. Williams disclosed that he only gave the amount of US$900 to six local radio stations in the county for the promotion of the prevention of the spread of the Ebola Virus in the county and nothing else.
He revealed that his foundation is a non-political, non-profit one, but purely humanitarian. It continues to help vulnerable people, give scholarships to needy students at all levels, without any discrimination.
He was allegedly linked to a staffer of his foundation, DU-Ben Cleon, who heads the ABC.
Predicated upon this, Mr. T. Nelson Williams has suspended Mr. Cleon for time in definite for using the compound of the foundation to host ABC’s meetings.
Grand Bassa County Electoral District #3 Representative Gabriel B. Smith, also denied the allegation that he is one of the supporters of ABC to unseat the county’s current leadership.
Mr. Smith then clarified that he only received a letter from the ABC as their direct lawmaker informing him about its action against the county leadership, but he never replied the letter or supported the group’s action.
“Under the Constitution of Liberia, every citizen has the right to freedom of speech, but he or she must be responsible for what he or she says,” he added.
On Friday, October 10, 2014, pandemonium broke out when another resistance group calling itself Patriotic Alliance of Bassa (PAB) reportedly attacked the ABC members and violently stoned and wounded some of them at the Unification Pavilion Hall. The victims were rushed to nearby Drug Stores for medical treatment.
At the same time the police in Buchanan, headed by the Superintendent Fredrick Nappy, arrested about 20 men of the PAB and detained them for disorderly conduct.
The incident erupted when the ABC was awaiting the arrival of the county’s Legislature caucus to present their petition to them during the third day of their demonstration.
At the police Headquarters in the Fairground in Buchanan on that fateful day, the Development Superintendent Adonie z. Greaves, who had carried the Buchanan City Solicitor, Isaac Yorcee, and the county’s Public Defender, Paul P. Jarvan, to release the detainees of PAB, went loggerheads with Buchanan City mayor Julia Bono.
Had it not been for the interception of the police, Grand Bassa County supreme grand zoe Edward John Taywayou, the two groups would have engaged in a fist fight.
Mr. Greaves accused Mayor Bono of supporting ABC, while Mayor Bono also accused Mr. Greaves of organizing the PAB to violently attack and disrupt the ABC’s protest.
In another development, one Liberia’s seasoned lawyers, who is also a son of Grand Bassa County, Cllr. Theophilus C. Gould, allegedly quoted Mayor Bono as saying the ABC’s petition to the county lawmakers was delayed because she should have been in charge of the Ebola Task Force warehouse but to the contrary.
Cllr. Gould then described her as being selfish and unpatriotic.
He made the utterances on Saturday, October 12, 2014 when his group, the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, along with the General Grand Chapter of the Eastern Star of Liberia, donated some assorted Ebola preventive materials and food items to Grand Bassa County Ebola Task Force.
The donations were received by Superintendent Etweda A. Cooper, on behalf of the Task Force.
In reaction, Mayor Bono catergorily denied the allegation and described it as false and misleading which she said is intended to create confrontation.
She then expressed disappointment over Cllr. Gould, as a renowned lawyer to the country, leveling such an allegation against her.