Rep. Gwion’s Body Arrives -Amidst tears, weeping and sorrow

MONROVIA: It was an emotionally charged atmosphere on Saturday, December 16, 2023 at the Roberts International Airport (RIA) when the body of the fallen Representative of District #1, Grand Gedeh County, the late Erol Madison Gwion Sr was brought into the country from Ghana on Kenya Airways amid tears, weeping and sorrow from family members, relatives, government officials and supporters who had gone to receive his remains.

A delegation from the Government of Liberia was led by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Bhofal Chambers which also included several present and incoming lawmakers such as Representative Richard Koon of D #1, Montserrado County and Representative elect of District #8, Montserrado County, Prince Toles, the Chairman of the Grand Gedeh County Legislative Caucus, Dr. George ES Boley, among others.

After the airport formalities by flight and security officials to usher out the remains which had arrived at 6:50 pm, the body was received by the government and family members and subsequently conveyed in a waiting hearse from the St. Moses Funeral Home in Gardnersville where it was taken awaiting further funeral arrangement upon the consent between the government and the family.

Most of the people who were even weeping profusely while heading to the RIA could not control their emotions when it was announced that the Kenya Airways which brought the body had arrived and that protocol officials were working out arrangement to bring out the body for onward movement to the St. Moses Funeral Home in Gardnersville. At that point the immediate family members and close friends and supporters were advised to go home to avoid any emotional charge that could lead to possible collapse of persons that normally occurred when bodies are brought from outside of the country and those close to the deceased may not be able to control their body balance.

As they were being led away in waiting vehicles, several outbursts of cries could be heard from them, sending the whole environment into sorrow and virtually everyone was in tears.

“Erol this was not our plan oooo”, “You told us not to be worried and that you were coming back, is this how you are coming back?’, “we voted for you to continue to help us but where are you leaving us now”, “We could avenge for your death, but only God will do it more than us”, “Those who did this will surely pay for it one by one, you put the whole county in pain and expect to gain from this”, “Erol wake up, we are prepared for your inauguration now, Zwedru is waiting for you”, among others were some of the wailing utterances being heard from the people.

The others who could brave the situation waited patiently as everything was finalized and followed the body to the St. Moses Funeral Home in Gardnersville. Representative Boley later on visited the family, consoled them, and had a brief meeting about preliminary preparation towards the funeral activities before he departed.

Meanwhile in faraway Zwedru, citizens who have been protesting in the wake of the death of Representative Gwion suspended their activities on Saturday to honor the arrival of his body and gathered at his residence in Zwedru where hundreds of citizens met to monitor the situation from Monrovia via phones and social media.

Reports had it that as soon as information was received in Zwedru that the body was now on the Liberian soil, the whole  gathering broke in uncontrollable tears, some, mostly women were rolling on the ground while the youth sang solidarity songs, chanted slogans and swearing the possible masterminds behind his death. Nearby in some ancestral villages of the Tchien People, gunshots were fired from traditional guns to signal the fall of a hero and a great person according to the culture and heritage of the people.

It can be recalled that Representative Gwion who was recently elected for his own full term having been elected through a bye election in 2021 when then Representative Zoe Emmanuel Pennue was elected as Senator. Gwion was elected on the ticket of the Liberia Restoration Party(LRP) and returned to the Coalition for Democratic Change(CDC) this year where he was elected during the October 10, 2023 general elections.

His death has been greeted with controversies with most of his supporters claiming that it was not an ordinary death but was executed through diabolical means and accused Senator Pennue, Gwion’s elder sister and others of spiritually being involved.

Protesters, many irate youths reacted to the death news with the burning down of the office complex of the traditional council, the properties of Senator Pennue and others and then blocking the main entrance into Zwedru City, demanding the release of their colleagues who were arrested and charged to court in the aftermath of the rioting few days back.

There has not been official announcement of the funeral arrangement but some family sources say the events are expected to take place in February, 2023 in Zwedru.

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