For Miss Nancy Gaye and Miss Mary Broh, Friday was another normal day of work with each carrying out her normal official functions. Miss Gaye, as usual, shuttles here and there performing special duties for the respected and eloquent Senior Senator of Maryland County, Honorable John A. Ballout, Jr., while Miss Broh ensures with personal appearance the enforcement of city ordinances in a dramatic and crowd assembling way. Both never dreamed of crossing confrontational and violent path. But this dark Friday, it was inadvertent.
Sources on Michelin Street narrated that pandemonium broke out when the strong woman who heads the City Corporation of Monrovia arrived on Michelin around 4:00pm in her usual militant and overzealous bid to ensure that the Capital City is kept decent and clean. As street vendors ran to and fro, Miss Gaye was said to have been caught in between. According to a source, she was told to run as “General Broh,” as they call her, was coming. The source indicated that Miss Gaye felt there was nothing to run away from as she violated no laws of the Republic nor was she a street peddler, saying further that Miss Broh was not to be feared; but respected as an official of Government.
Other sources confirmed and said the City Mayor was infuriated at the statement that she should not be feared which resulted into what they described as a ‘DIRTY SLAP” on the face of Miss Gaye. They narrated that the victim emotionally approached the Mayor but was stopped and arrested by the City Police which resulted into an angry crowd of Liberians threatening the Lord Mayor and chanting “enough is enough. We will deal with Mary Broh.” Michelin Street, now being called the Street of Assault by dramatic minded citizens was a scene of tension and involuntary imprisonment of the Mayor on account of angry citizens seeking justice for Miss Gaye.
Miss Gaye, a grieving victim seems not to understand why she was slapped, handcuffed, taken to Randall Street and released. She claimed to have immediately reported the matter to the police deputy director who advised that they could not arrest the city mayor- though she was in the right place where acts of violence are taken. She was told, according to her, to pursue legal course at the courts of law. The thought of it “gives her mental anguish,” she confessed.
Capitol building sources also confirm that Miss Gaye sought the intervention of the Liberian Senate through her Boss, Senator Ballout. The Chief of Office Staff was directed to write a letter upon directive to Plenary due to his absence at Capitol Building on official visit to Maryland. That communication formed a part of the Senate Tuesday’s Agenda but was thrown out on grounds that it came from a staff of the Senate. The motion was made by former Pro-Temp of the Senate, Honorable Isaac Nyenabo despite pleas from Senator Jewel Howard Taylor that the communication should be read as a came from a citizen of the Republic of Liberia.
As Miss Gaye seeks redress to what she described as humiliation, injuries received and losses in the amount of seven thousand U.S. Dollars and keys to her vehicle, there is impeccable information that powers are at the peak of manipulation to give the perpetrator justice rather than the victim. Sources close to City Hall claimed that a deputy inspector general of the police was seen at the city hall and attempts were made to secretly pass over the victim’s car keys to the police and discussions were held for the police to give evidence against Miss Gaye. How true this information is has not been officially verified. Strangely, sources have claimed that City Hall has gone to the Magistrate Court for a writ of arrest or summons to be issued against the victim perhaps to avoid any legislative interference.
Analysts are quick to deduce that the President of the Republic of Liberia has distance herself from her city mayor on this matter and she fearing the Liberian Senate action, there was a need to draw in the judiciary to forestall vote of no confidence and a resolution to the President to that effect. They claimed that statesmanship, civility, humility and righteousness demands only that the City Mayor draw from Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, and Jimmy Swarggar who did the honorable thing to apologize for their miscalculated and erroneous actions. To insist that injustice should take the place of justice is the most inappropriate way to unite the nation and to serve the people. Mary Broh should do the honorable thing, they conclude.
Supporters of the City Mayor claimed that Miss Gaye disrespected the Lord Mayor and deserved what she got. Others say that Monrovia looks today is the result of the bold and fearless stance of the City Mayor. They hailed her as the most progressive official and one who has to heart the Republic of Liberia and wants the Sirleaf’s administration to succeed. Warner Yeba, a student of sociology and believer in community development says Mary Broh is his star but advised that a degree of democratic tolerance is the best option for Liberia.
On Capitol Hill, some members of the Legislative Women Organization termed Miss Broh’s activities as excessive and abusive to all that national healing, reconciliation, statesmanship and good governance stand for. Though there has been no official statements from the organization to which Miss Gaye belong, it is rumored that they will not let this matter go into coma.
Relations between the Legislature and the City Mayor have not been cordial. The Senate rejected the appointment of Miss Broh on the basis that the Charter of the City Corporation calls for the election of the City Mayor and not appointment by the President. Constitutional interpretations were brought before the Supreme Court which ruled that Article 54(d) empowered the President to appoint local officials which is inclusive of the position of mayors. In other words of interpretations, the Charter of the City Corporation violated relevant portions of the constitution. The Liberian Senate took exception to that ruling and rejected Miss Broh-leaving the President to appoint her Acting City Mayor. The House of Representatives and Miss Broh have not had a pleasant relationship as well. Citizens and pro-democracy groups have not taken kindly to the Mayor. All described her as having unpleasant excesses.
Despite all of these, Miss Broh has transformed the City Corporation to pleasing status. From a deteriorated and unpleasant odor inflicted City Hall to one that has become the pride of all organizations and government functionaries. From impassable streets littered with traders to streets where cars once more can drive. From disorganized street parking, to one so organized. From dirt littered streets and unemployment of inhabitants to clean streets and employment opportunities.
The City Mayor has her scores and high points and dare to venture where none can7. The President of Liberia adores such working commitments. But, the Mayor has some profound weaknesses that are unacceptable, says a City Corporation employee. To replace justice with injustice in the Nancy Gaye’s Case, he thinks advisors should tell Miss Broh to abandon her litigation and apologize to Miss Gaye and Senator John Ballout who is an image of reconciliation and a good friend of City Hall.