Drug Barons Behind LDEA Imbroglio? -Experts On Roots of Kromah’s Woes In Internal Feud

MONROVIA: The Joseph Boakia-led Unity Party administration has been attempting to make some strides, to make a point; to vindicate itself from its boast to clean the country of illicit drugs and substances. It can be recalled that the Unity Party, then in opposition, used the issue of drugs to propagandize its way to power. They had accused the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), their predecessor, of compromising the country’s drug war, as being insensitive to the flight of young people. But as things have been turning, it seems the chicks are coming home to roast. For instance, pundits think the president’s action to indiscriminately suspend officials of the Liberia Drug Agency, including its head, AB Kromah, who is well noted to be a no-nonsense anti-crime czar, epitomizes how drugs barons from time immemorial use subtle but gargantuan and venomous counterattack tactics to weaken and surmount government’s well-intentioned fight against the illicit drug cartel. Some Liberians, including security experts, have been unparking and decoding events echoing at the LDEA), positing that the feud at the agency bears the face of a strategic war launched by a collusion of drug moguls and ‘VIP-drug users’ using cannon fodders. The Analyst reports.

While harmful drugs, narcotics, kush and zomies, are laying siege on the country, devastating the youthful population which amounts to nearly 65 percent, those who are relied upon to repel the dangerous pandemic are at war with each other.

The head of the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency on the one hand and his two main deputies on the other have been at each other’s throat, rivalling for supremacy. The feud has got them all booted, at least temporarily, with a presidential suspension.

Those who are familiar with Liberia’s security complications, specifically the fight against illicit drugs and harmful substances, contend that the hubbub at the LDEA is far more than ordinary people see it. They have been sharing their insights.

Decoding the Fracas’ Shadows

National security experts say they are very worry that the misunderstanding amongst officials of the LDEA could forestall promising signs that were afoot when it was announced that the no-nonsense anti-drug czar Abraham Kromah was appointed to head the agency.

Kromah, they say, was credited for beating back crime rate in the country while serving in the Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf-headed government at the Liberia National Police.

Coming under the onslaught of his deputies who could have aided him repeat what was in the past is a major disruption and ovation of the prospects that were at bay when Col. Kromah was announced head of the LDEA.

With suspension added to the saga, according to the security experts who have been following the situation, the entire drug war energized by Kromah has not entered into inertia.

The consequent reality, one expect asserted, is that the fate of a whole generation of Liberians, the youth fondly called ‘the apple of the population’s eye’ or ‘the precious jewels’, once again faces oblivion due to exposure to, and abuse of drugs, narcotic substances. “That Kromah is being clawed away, the drug merchants must be celebrating.”

“No region, no county, no city, no community, no family is immune,” he said. “Young people in their droves are swayed from sanity and value of life, many turning wayward, others dying from the toxic substances dumped into the country.”

For far too long, fighting to conquer the drum pandemic in the country had not been on silver platter; it has been an all-out war and a fierce affront to drug merchants and their VIP clienteles, who are the chief linchpins underpinning the worsening drug culture threatening to wipe out the youth of this country. As one successful effort is made to move a foot forward, it becomes crushed immediately by powerful, exceedingly sinister and sophisticated cabal that leagues against progress.

Once again, this is repeating itself. Traditional adversaries of Liberia’s anti-drug strides are at it again, and experts are calling for caution on the part of President Boakai to be aware; for a number of high-level security pundits conjecture there may be more to the fight between the head of the agency, Abraham B. Kromah and his two deputies, who they say could be mere canon folders of drug barons that don’t need harmony at the agency so that they have upper hand in the drug war.

According to these pundits, the altercations at the LDEA are shadowy attacks knowingly or unknowing being fought by Directors-General for operations and administration — Hassan Fidiga and Gbawou Kowou – on behalf of individuals and institutions that are longtime adversaries against Government efforts to end the drug pandemic.

Most security experts who talked to The Analyst during the weekend say the public outcries for the suspension of the two deputies by President Joseph N. Boakai are justified and in the right direction because AB Kromah is a victim of concerted aggression from powerful forces who want to perpetuate and grow their deadly KUSH and ZOMBIE trade unhindered in the country.

“Since the ascendency of Director Abraham Kromah to the helm of power at the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency, drug importation and peddling in the country have been minimized as opposed to the drug situation in the past as some, and most of the drug barons if not all have gone down into hiding,” Thomas Barry, a criminal justice student at the AMEZU.

He cited the proliferation of ghettos in past regimes that have been dismantled upon the ascendency of AB Kromah to the directorate of the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency.

The drug cartel in the country, another criminal justice senior student conjectured, finds the renewed aggression against them by the Boakai government as a major threat to their trade and therefore find Kromah, who a foremost architecture in the war against them, an ideal enemy that must be fought.

“Using if not sponsoring Fadiga and Kowou to disrespect their boss, to create misunderstanding and confusion amongst key actors at LDEA is one sure way that drug traders believe they would sigh a relief from Kromah’s sustained disruption to their business,” he said. “And by and large, once they bring Kromah down as they have attempted doing, the better the relief for them. As AB is now under suspension like the baron’s LDEA allies, they have got that comfort they are working for.”

Another security expert added: “Now look at the logic: why would people who are supposed to be trained security professionals willfully breached security ethics as rendering insubordination to their boss. One can safely agree that exhibiting insubordination towards their boss, verbal attacks and brandishing weapons, are all a classic way high class drug pushers would like to create internal disharmony and instability at the critical agency as to reduce its potency to fight back.”

Mr. Tokpa Mullah, a longtime security expert living in the ELWA community area suspects those who were behinds the infamous $100 million dollar drug importation case to still be around, working with strategically placed government officials to frustrate the government’s robust anti-drug policy.

Other views sampled by The Analyst on the issue implored President Boakai to reconsider his action of suspension, particularly by purging Director Kromah of wrong doing and treat him as a victim of cosmic attack orchestrated by powerful drug merchants against the Government.

He added: “In the context of the security realm, Fadiga and his colleague Kowou should know that the boss is the boss. Even given the fact that they are all presidential appointees, and more so as good gentlemen, they needed to sort out their internal grievances and misunderstanding amongst themselves instead of rendering insubordination to their boss.

“In security science, obedience is sine qua non, an inevitable factor that should not be violated. No matter the level of training, assignment precedes rank, a reason for which channels for redress are laid out in duty manuals and administrative protocols to avoid altercations, confusion and underperformance.”

Swaray Mohammed, a private security commander and expert in security science also reasoned that under no circumstances that any trained commander, let alone someone like Director Kromah could not allow the both deputies override and outplay him when they had already shown impropriate attitudes, always using the social media to put out all kinds of stuff about the agency and about him (Kromah).

“And more so with reports that besides the grudges shown and often confronting their commander or boss with guns in their hands.”

Social Media Exposé

The public’s attention on official accounts of what has been transferring at the LDEA came in the form of the social media reports of the saga which show that it all started at the LDEA Headquarters when bodyguards of Director Kromah prevented the guns-flaunting Deputy Director-Generals for Operations and Administration, Hassan Fidiga and Gbawou Kowou had sought a meeting with the LDEA boss  but with their side weapons following their complaint against Col. Kromah to the Minister of Justice, Cllr. Oswald Tweh.

“No one’s getting inside with weapons,” said one of Col. Kromah’s bodyguards was heard telling to the two deputies who were headed for the meeting following a complaint against Director General Kromah.

“But we are not having a meeting here?” one of them responded in the audio, adding, “You say no weapon coming inside? We will not have any f… meeting here.”

“What kind of disrespect is that? What the f… is that,” another deputy growled in an outrage, questioning. “What is wrong with AB?  Is it not disrespectful that no one goes inside there with weapons? But then f… you. I am not going to the AB office. We are having no f.. meeting here. What kind of disrespect is that?”

Further in their outrage, another LDEA deputy said: “Why you will disrespect us like that? Because I have been respecting you? What the f… wrong with you coming disrespect people here?”

Amid the rain of outbursts, Krumah could only be heard in the audio saying, “Go ahead. Go ahead being rude.”

At this juncture, one of them, presumably the Deputy Director General for Operation, Col. Fadiga remarked, “As long I am a DEA as a law enforcement officer, I will go anywhere with my weapon. I am not in your office, but you cannot stop me from moving with my weapon in this place here. Tell your men to do what they can do.”

This squabble at the LDAE reached its peak on Monday, June 3, 2024 when the violent altercation that erupted between Mr. Kromah and Fadiga prompted the intervention of the Inspector General of the Liberia National Police, Col. Gregory Coleman based on AB Kromah call for the Police Chief to intervene, before the situation was brought under control.

Fadiga, Kowou’s Complaint

Fadiga and Kowou, in a complaint to the Minister of Justice which surfaced on social media Tuesday, made allegations of their boss’ ‘repeated humiliation and insults” meted to them. The indicated that Kromah blatantly disregarded the LDEA’s policies, guidelines, and procedures and urged the Justice Minister to take urgent actions on matters ranging from what they call “illegal practices, protection of notorious drug dealers to insubordination”.

Another allegation levied against Mr. Kromah is his reported submission of several names for firearm training, many of whom they (Fadiga and Kowou) claimed are ex-fighters, without undergoing the necessary vetting process and without any consultation with the deputy director general of operations.

“It is imperative that all personnel who are authorized to carry firearms possess the requisite temperament, discipline, and professional qualifications,” they said in the complaint, recalling the outbursts of confusion between them and their boss and how it led to an altercation that provoked the intervention of armed officers of the Liberia National Police.

Kromah Shares his Side

Notwithstanding their allegations, Col. Kromah, in a brief press conference, rubbished his deputy’s claims, stating that Mr. Fadiga along with his colleague was trying to leverage lies and falsehood to gain prominence.

“My issue with drugs is personal, combined with integrity and institution,” said Col. Kromah, noting “there is no way I will compromise the issue of drugs here as far my records are concerned.”

“Since 1985, I joined the police force and serve with diligence. I don’t advance falsehood for prominence,” Col. Kromah retorted.

He explained that his work has always spoken for him, adding that he thinks Mr. Fadiga and his likes are trying to leverage falsehood for prominence.

Early last month, the LDEA announced the availability of zombie drugs in Liberia and cautioned against their usage.

The declaration of zombie drugs’ existence in Liberia stirred fears in the public especially when a lot of young people have already been damaged by another narcotic substance called kush.

The LDEA said zombie drugs had been confiscated from around Monrovia, warning that it was going to raid areas it considered to be targets in Red-Light, Paynesville, and Miami Beach in Monrovia.

Col. Kromah had reassured the public of the LDEA’s robust measures in the execution of its duties to combat drugs and to clamp down on drug traffickers and distributors.

An audio clip making rounds on the social media has attested that the two deputies to Director-general Kromah rained insults on him when Kromah’s bodyguards had forbidden the two from entering the LDEA director-general’s office for a meeting scheduled with them with their side weapons.

Suspension Falls on all

Following the confusion which went viral on the social media, President Joseph N. Boakai with immediate effect, suspended without pay, pending investigation, the Director General, Mr. Abraham S. Kromah, Deputy Director General for Administration, Mr. Gbawou Kowou, and the Deputy Director General for Operations, Mr. Hassan Fadiga of the Liberian Drug Enforcement Agency (LDEA).

The President ordered an investigation of the events occurring at the Agency on June 3, 2024, and said, “The acts of disorder and chaos that took place at the headquarters of the LDEA were unacceptable.”

Such acts, the President continued, threaten public peace and undermine Government’s fight against illicit drugs. He appointed Mr. Christopher Peters, as Officer in Charge (OIC) of the Agency pending the conclusion of the investigation.

5 Comments
  1. Garsuah Gborvlehn says

    Unless you are further exposing the diabolical behavior of Abraham Kromah fighting with teeth and nail to protect drug barons, an act on his part which has been resisted by his colleagues, no drug barons are behind the imbroglio at the LDEA.

    Furthermore, STOP THE LIES, DISTORTION, AND DISINFORMATION referring to Abraham Kromah as no-nonsense anti-drug czar when this very Abraham Kromah is the one bent on the diabolical intent of protecting drug lords to enrich himself.

    In the first place Abraham Kromah is no even qualified to be heading that agency as far as concerns the law, given the fact that the very Kromah was disrobed and dismissed from the Police for his criminal and indiscipline nature and character.

  2. Cllr. Frederick A.B. Jayweh says

    Absolutely, this so-called story and the entire publication was financed and paid for by Col. Abraham S.Kromah. When on earth would Liberia’s key news outlets function and put the interest of Liberia and the citizens of Liberia first? Above all else, this story is a shame.

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