In a press release issued in Monrovia on Wednesday, July 27, 2022, the Ministry has accordingly directed the Inspector General of Police to launch an immediate and full-scale investigation into the incident.
Images of the violence being posted on social media show unwarranted use of force and maltreatment of some participating youths which has no place in Liberia’s newfound democracy.
Liberia’s Justice Minister and Attorney General, Cllr. Frank Musah Dean, Jr., has accordingly called on the police to ensure that perpetrators are brought to book in keeping with the laws of Liberia.
The Government made it clear that while it encourages all citizens to express their views on national issues their methods must be in conformity with law.
‘‘Articles 13 and 15 of the Liberian Constitution guarantee such rights. The named constitutional provisions, however, clearly express the safeguarding of public order, public safety as well as rights and freedom of others,’’ the press release indicated.
The Ministry of Justice also made it clear that it did not receive a request from any group to march in the streets of Monrovia on Tuesday, July 26, whether in protest for or against the Liberian Government.
‘‘A formal request for any such action is a cardinal requirement by law, which can be conveyed through a written petition to the Ministry of Justice for a permit. The Liberia National Police Act of 2015 Section III Article 22.86 which also deals with Public Order mandates any persons wanting to hold such a march or protest to contact the Minister of Justice in keeping with the law. Had such a request come to the Ministry of Justice, the government would have acted to ensure public safety and order by scheduling the rival groups at different times,’’ the press release disclosed.
The Government is encouraging all individuals who witnessed the Tuesday, July 26 violence to assist the Police with its investigation, adding that they can be assured that their identities will be protected and information held confidentially
Meanwhile, there have since been widespread condemnations of the incident. The National Civil Society Council of Liberia (NCSCL) in the strongest term condemned the incident and demanded prompt investigation into the matter.
Like the NCSL, the opposition Alternative National Congress of Mr. Alexander B. Cummings, also condemned the violence and called on the Government to bring the doers to book. At the same, several Liberians have similarly condemned the incident and called on the Government to leave no stone unturned in bringing to justice the perpetrators of the uncivilized act so as to serve as a deterrence.