The Liberia Council of Churches (LCC) has strongly condemned ‘the unacceptable barbaric attitude’ that ruthless people continue exhibit under the canopy of supporting political candidates; the council also proposes to engage all candidates in the District #15 rerun election so as to encourage them to commit to running non-violent campaigns and accepting free, fair and transparent elections results.
The Council specifically condemned in the strongest term, the act of violence perpetrated against citizens of Liberia by some unidentified elements on Saturday, August 17, 2019 in District #15 Logan Town community, saying that the Liberian people, struggling to survive under tough economic situation, deserve to live in peace and tranquility in their own nation. The LCC therefore affirms that it will intensify its role in the State and will not allow anyone to destroy the peace and stability earned so far.
The Church leaders also warned that the violent actions do not represent the hard earn characteristics of Liberians. The Council therefore declared that there are still more good people than bad people in Liberia.
In a statement signed by the LCC’s President Bishop Kortu K. Brown, and issued 18th August 2019, the Council also said it is time that government exhibits governing authority to protect lives and properties and also uphold the tenets of good governance. The LCC and other church leaders, met last Sunday, August 18, 2018 at which time they held a press conference on the violence that occurred in the community of Logan Town, Electoral District #15 – Montserrado County
LCC Suggests Engagement
In that vein, the LCC has proposed to engage all candidates in the District #15 rerun election. The purpose is to encourage the candidates to commit themselves to running non-violent campaigns and to accept free, fair and transparent elections results. The LCC therefore said it will appreciate if the candidates can sign a Non-Violent Declaration to affirm such commitment and support to maintain peace and to strengthen democracy in Liberia.
The engagements with government, political parties and other stakeholders, the LCC said, should be taken as an advantage in moving Liberia forward. “The LCC maintained that its role as an objective stabilizer for peace will be more assertive,” the release said.
Accordingly, a committee headed by Dr. Benjamin D. Lartey, former General Secretary of the Council has been established. The committee comprises other eminent church leaders and has been carrying out an independent fact-finding. Other members of the fact-finding committee includes Bishop Torgboh E. Dixon of Don Stewart Christ Pentecostal Church, Rev. Joseph G. Johnson III of Resurrection Baptist Ministries – Bishop Aloysius Nimley of the National Bibleway Church, amongst others.
The LCC shall inform the Liberian people about what spiked out the violence in Montserrado County District #15 and other violent actions carried out at the National Elections Commission and offices of political parties in the name of political democracy.
Observatory Group Proposed
The LCC also said it wants acts of violence and provocation be monitored and documented, called for the establishment of an Observatory Group against VIOLENCE to PROTECT peace in Liberia. The proposed Observatory Group will not only protect peace in the country, the Council said it also intends to protect democracy and stability, and to enhance accountability, justice and the rule of law.
“The proposed observatory group,” the Council said, “is to monitor, document and report on all cases and perpetrators of violence, inciting languages, political intolerance and threats to peace, democracy and stability in the country, periodically – calling for national and international actions against perpetrators or inciters of violence,” the press statement by the LCC asserted.
The proposed observatory group will have a Chairperson, Co-chairperson and Secretary and will comprise up to 15 persons including representation from church and para-church groups to include the Liberia Full Gospel Ministers Fellowship, National Christian Council of Liberia, Association of Evangelicals of Liberia, Civil society organizations, amongst others.
The Church as the moral conscience of society said it is unhappy with the political, social and economic trends the country is parading, and therefore called for calm on every side of the divide.
The LCC comprising of all Catholic, Methodist, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Baptist, Pentecostal, Presbyterian members as well as fraternal organizations will be commuting very soon to discuss on the future of Liberia, according to the statement; reports Bill Jarkloh.