We had and continue to observe that the marketing of stolen phones and other electronic devices on one of Monrovia key streets has turned out to be a major occupation for dozens of young people.Many of these young people, with absolutely no basic training or education that would set the basis for gainful employment opportunities either in government or the private sector, continue to choose the trade as career or lifetime employment.
With no regard for government security personnel, the young traders, we further observe, continue to openly market their phones as if their action was sanctioned by the GoL.
They, without fear, buy stolen phones from phones’ snatchers and sell them to individual buyer during broad daylight . In some instance, the so-called phone sellers and snatchers engage in heavy street fight, obstruct traffic, thereby causing embarrassment for business people, pedestrians, moving vehicles and offices. Sometimes, the action of the young, but unskilled phone snatchers and sellers, in many cases, is carried out in the presence of law enforcement officers, including personnel of the Liberia National Police (LNP).
Not only that the action of the phone sellers and snatchers had and continues to cause embarrassment to people and paralyze street movement, it had also created problems for cell phones’ carriers who are often troubled by the deviant behavior of the cash driven, but unprofessional young traders. Bluntly, it is becoming increasingly expedient that the GoL takes every necessary action to address this situation, which is very much an embarrassment to business houses, offices, pedestrians and residents of the areas.
Against this backdrop, we recommend that the GoL via its relevant ministries and agencies enhance its employment opportunities. With enhanced empowerment program for the youth, we believe, this will deter the young traders from the unwarranted street business, which had and continues to cause much trouble not only for dwellers of the affected streets, but offices, business houses, pedestrians as well as moving vehicles. It is our fervent hope that the GoL will heed our call and act.