-Kofi Woods alarms
Ex-Public Works Minister and official orator for this year’s Armed Forces Day celebration, Attorney Samuel Kofi Woods, has seriously alarmed over the poor and deplorable conditions faced by men and women of the Joint Securities deployed at the various borders as they maintain stability and peace with neighboring Mano River Union or MRU countries.
Attorney Woods narrated that during a trip around the county, he observed that the Joint Security forces at the various borders are not adequately paid and are kept in deplorable houses with no benefit.
Delivering the 58th Armed Forces Day address Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at the Barclay Training Center or BTC in Monrovia, he said, the plight of the Joint Securities at the border points around the country should be addressed as a matter of urgency in order for the men and women manning the borders to serve the country professionally.
Attorney Woods also called on the Government of Liberia to provide accountability for the military by increasing benefits for servicemen to give them and their families a better life like other meaningful Liberians.
Attorney Wood, also a rights advocate, urged the Government and authorities of the Armed Forces of Liberia to work hard in erasing public fear each time the military comes in the streets; saying, “The military [still] reflects the past when seen by citizens.”
The Army under the late dictator Samuel Doe was tribalized during the Civil Conflict, losing public trust and subsequently demobilized in 2005 in accordance with a Comprehensive Peace Accord or CPA brokered among warring factions and civil society groups in Ghana between 2003 and 2004.
The post-war Armed Forces of Liberia was trained by an American company DynCorp with funding from the U.S. Department of State, targeting a strengthen of 2,000.
The Armed Forces Day Orator noted that when AFL personnel are given the opportunity to study abroad, they should not seek personal interest, but the interest of the State and its people.
He added that the Army should also have brain power to contribute to national development, and decision-making in the Military.
He appealed to Government to provide resources for the medical sector of the AFL so that servicemen can have access to better healthcare.
Attorney Woods stressed that if the dreams of the AFL is not fulfilled or met, the nation and its citizens will not be fulfilled, adding that men and women of the Armed Forces of Liberia should not only be trained to carry arms or fight war, but given good education so that after leaving the Military, they will be able to serve the country in different capacity.
By Ben P. Wesee & Rewina Juduh