There were protests yesterday: under Pres. Tolbert (eg. Matthews and the Progressives), Sirleaf (CDC parading caskets and blood stained panties in the streets, which they claimed belong to Madame Sirleaf) and protest under Samuel Doe (esp university students at his throat). Doe particularly hated protests so much, going as far as sending the army on the University of Liberia campus to brutalize students. Under Sirleaf, while she had her reservations, she allowed the Congress Party and George Weah and his people to demonstrate. But under President Weah, there is a great dislike for any sort of protest, with him and his supporters, what gives rise to Weah’s intolerance can only be best described as a creeping dictatorship, that has the propensity of sending Liberia back into the dark days.
George Weah spoke on the first Sunday of the year in which he was peeved, about his citizens protesting and the evil opposition, which he chastised, unreservedly. His sermon if anything says we have entered a new grey area in Liberia. Weah has a great dislike for opposition politics, the same kind that brought him to power, he complains every day about protests! What he forgets to understand is that without a vibrant opposition Liberia has no democracy. he is on record as threatening that anyone who insults ‘the president will not walk the streets freely.”
While the ADMINISTRATION, finds all kinds of reasons including and amongst others that the June 7th protest would have led to war, the bring back our money protest would have led to war, chaos, driving away investments, taking kids out from school, etc, etc, etc, however, both those protests went on peacefully, including the aborted Jan 30th protest which was heavily policed, stopped and moved to Jan 6th, but was quickly put down and dispersed in few hours when it began by riot police determined to adhere to “ORDERS.”
What we see today, is that there are a growing trend and wave of intolerance towards protests or any peaceful assembly in our country under Weah and the CDC, and this is not a good sign for LIBERIAN Democracy. The CDC is resorting to fear tactics, and all sorts of explanations, shenanigans, and tricks to denied Liberians their Constitutional rights to peacefully meet and to “consult upon the common good”.
The fact that we have no legislature since it is compromised, and we have no judiciary since it also weak, dead and all our political institutions have little or no independence, speaks much for what to expect in the coming years.
Liberians must brace themselves for the future. With Sirleaf protection still in play [Ellen Sirleaf demanded protection for she and her cronies and family before she left power, SHE GOT IT and it is rumored she paid off Weah and thus her soild PROTECTON], Morlu’s remarks that if the CDC loses POWER it’s partisans and Mr. Weah won’t be protected, is also a cause for concerns. The Controversial CDC Chairman made those remarks during the bring back our money campaign. His utterances say even if Weah left power today he might seek protection or Sirleaf post-transition or Presidency arrangements, that now sees her absolved of all crimes or prosecution for PROTECTION. What we have on our hands, is a party—THE CONGRESS FOR DEMOCRATIC CHANGE, that may not want to leave POWER volunteeringly—and is refusing all attempts to reform the election Commission for an even playing field. The all-important election is headed by Ellen Sirleaf stooge, who is at best controversial and lacks credibility.
The recent by-elections that were violent in which CDC partisans were stoning candidates and opposition partisans in the streets could be indicators for what to expect. it seems we are in this for the long hurl, PEOPLE.
—Che Biko Kokolu
George Weah, DW