MONROVIA – Former Vice President and Standard Bearer of the Unity Party Mr. Joseph Nyumah Boakai has said the act of violence on Cllr. Gloria Musu Scott who is a member of the judiciary and many others before now who do not get the justice they deserve is an attack on the very foundation of the rule of law and democratic society the citizens are trying to build following years of violent conflict, stressing that the Constitution mandates and confers responsibility on the government to protect all the citizens without discrimination and ending up with a verdict that “government has failed!”
The submission of the former VP formed part of his public reaction through a press conference he hosted yesterday to voice out his opinion to the unfortunate occurrence when the residence of the former Chief Justice was attacked by armed men, killing her niece, Miss Cherloe Musu, a graduating student of the Straz University and injuries inflicted on another family member receiving medical attention at a local hospital in Monrovia.
“Our country awoke in the early hours of Thursday, February 23 to the terrible news of a deadly attack on former Chief Justice Gloria Musu Scott, which also led to the sad and untimely death of her daughter Charloe Musu.
“I condemn in the strongest possible terms this despicable, cowardly attack and an act of barbarity carried out by armed men on the Former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and many other attacks on Liberians and residents, who remain anonymous and suffer in silence, and whose stories we do not often hear and whose investigations remain inconclusive”, former VP Boakai said.
Speaking further, Mr. Boakai said in the years of the Weah administration, “we have witnessed an incessant increase in conflict and political violence and increased criminal and interpersonal violence. Criminal activities are rife and remain a major threat to the peace of residents in Monrovia and many other communities in the country. Burglary, armed robbery, rape, drug trafficking, substance abuse, theft, and other acts of violence on persons have become common features of concern in our communities”
“Sadly, the responsiveness of our security institutions, still challenged with structural and capacity deficiencies, is highly negligible. The state security system is at the moment limited and under-resourced. And instead of investing in peoples’ and community security, President Weah is focused more on elite and private security, which tends to serve him and his few officials. President WEAH’S prescription that citizens buy CCTV cameras to address the rising violence and lawlessness demonstrates his government’s failure, insensitivity, arrogance and lack of understanding of its obligation to the citizens and residents of Liberia. It also shows President Weah and the CDC government’s woeful inadequacies to govern”, Mr. Boakai said.
The first participant of UP said against seemingly neglect of the security situation in the country, he has a contrary view, stressing “when we invest in people’s security, not only do we limit violence and conflict, but increase access to security for all and build a peaceful society”.
“As we are alarmed and terrified by the invasion of the home of former chief Justice Gloria Musu-Scott and the violent attack on her family by armed men, we are reminded of the numerous acts of violence and lawlessness that occur each day in homes and communities around the country with nowhere for citizens to turn for help. This is sadly a daily occurrence.
“Our information is that the attackers stabbed the victims multiple times, causing the death of Justice Scott’s daughter, Charloe Musu and serious injuries to another family member who was in the home. My wife Kartumu Boakai and I mourn with Justice Scott and her family in their grief and pray for them as well as the soul of their loved one who was tragically murdered in the incident. We also pray for the speedy recovery of the wounded family member.
“We note that the attack on Justice Scott and her family occurred after two prior incidents of attack by armed men on her home on the 8th and 9th of February, which she reported. We also note the government’s neglect to provide her and her family with security after the previous two violent attacks. It also took several hours before the police arrived on the scene, only after the assailants had safely left.
“We, accordingly, demand a speedy investigation into the incident and associated circumstances and request that the outcome of said investigation be made public. The perpetrators of this heinous act must be brought to justice and held accountable for their actions. We must not allow violence and intimidation to undermine our hard-won peace and erode the fundamental principles of freedom and democracy we aspire for in our society”, the UP strong man said.
Mr. Boakai said the brazen act of criminality sadly underscores the tragic state of affairs in the country where no one is safe, not even in their own home. “We are deeply saddened by the pervasive crisis of insecurity and lawlessness that has engulfed our country and frightened fellow citizens and residents who live in constant fear in their homes, communities, towns, and villages”, he said.
Mr. Boakai called on the country’s international partners to take note of the deteriorating security situation and to prevail on them to demand the government to fulfill its foremost obligation.
He said the failure of the Weah-led administration to perform its basic duty of providing safety and security to citizens and residents alike is a major derelict of his constitutional obligation as president. “A country where citizens cannot sleep in peace and security in their own homes and cannot count on their government and police and security forces to provide them security and safety is, I am afraid, not a responsive state”, he said.
Mr. Boakai who is poised to contest the presidency against President Weah and others in the ensuing general election said coming on the heels of national legislative and presidential elections just nine months from now, “we worry that the current atmosphere of insecurity and violence portends danger that might inversely impact their conduct. These atrocities and provocations on our peace will not deter us”.
“We will continue to collectively invest in our peace. Liberians will march forward to the ballot box to vote for the change they deserve. The change which will ultimately usher in the guarantees for their human dignity.
“To the people of Liberia, we call on you to be your brothers and sisters’ keepers. Strengthen your community watch groups and form groups where none currently exist. The President and his government have thrown in the towel. Just as they cannot provide jobs, better health care, good education programs, youth empowerment, and better ethical standards in government, etc., THEY ARE UNABLE TO PROVIDE YOUR BASIC SECURITY NEEDS.
“Finally, I would like again to extend my deepest sympathy to Justice Gloria Scott: a loyal friend, a patriot, a decent Liberian, an astute lawyer and our UP Partisan, whose home was attacked by heartless and ungodly men. She deserves a better reward for dedicated service to our country”, the former Vice President said.