The head of the special delegation visiting Liberia from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has expressed explicit confidence in the ability of the local security agencies, especially the Liberia National Police (LNP), to play cardinal roles in maintaining peace and stability. The team is headed by the Director General of the Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Public Security, Mr. Duan Daqi.
Duan expressed confidence in the LNP and its counterpart’s ability to maintain security and rule of law during the post-UNMIL era, although he stressed more needs to be done if the locals are to step in the huge shoes left behind by the mission. “There is a need for more training and capacity-building,” Duan said when he and his team paid a courtesy call on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf at her Foreign Affairs Ministry offices.
The delegation is in the country to further strengthen the already flourishing bilateral cooperation between Liberia and China and to assist in the maintenance of peace and security, said Duan.
He disclosed that his government has a plan to send a team of Chinese trainers to train a unit of the Liberia National Police in anti-terrorism and also extended an invitation for two senior police officers to participate in a peacekeeping training program to take place in China next month.
Duan also spoke of plans to train 20 Senior LNP officers at a Chinese Police Academy in November 2016 as part of its support to the capacity building initiative of the LNP.
“We are prepared to assist in building the capacity of the Liberia National Police, in the aftermath of the drawn down of the UNML to include the supply of uniforms and other equipment,” Duan said.
President Sirleaf responded, “We are pleased by your timely visit to Liberia.” She also acknowledged the many contributions made by the Chinese Government to Liberia, particularly to the LNP. She called on the PRC to help invest more in the Police as it takes over security from UNMIL.
She enumerated many of the challenges currently faced by the LNP in its mandate of law enforcement, with particular references made to capacity and logistics. The President lauded the delegation for the plan to provide specialized training for the police in fighting crimes and terrorism, while at the same time lauding the current Chinese Ambassador to Liberia, Zhang Yue, for his leadership and outstanding role in Liberia’s recovery process.
LNP Director Chris Massaquoi expressed gratitude to Duan and his team for the visit. “I am grateful for your presence earlier today at our headquarters and for all the support you have given the police in the wake of the drawdown of the UN Mission. We, however, need every necessary support that we can get to enable the police to perform effectively,” Massaquoi noted.