The Management of City Builders Incorporated, dealers of building materials and household furniture terms demands from protesting residents of Paco Yard community at the Freeport of Monrovia as criminal coercion.
On Monday this week, group of protesting residents from the community stormed premises of City Builders Incorporated, near the Freeport of Monrovia, demanding among others, scholarship for 300 deserving youth of the community; employment for at least 50 qualified youth, micro-loan for 300 women, and US$4,500 quarterly to help clean drainages in the wake of flooding in various communities across Monrovia.
The demands were contained in a letter to the City Builders Management under the signatures of Mr. George P. Wulue, Youth Chairman; Ester Ballah, Women Chairman, and Mr. John S. Ellis, II Chairman.
But reacting to the demands, business spokesman Eric Filor Nagbe, says management received a letter dated August 2, 2018 from the community demanding payments, scholarships, and employments amongst others as corporate social responsibilities.
He explains they run a business center, and not a company to be obligated to corporate social responsibilities, stressing that if management wanted to do anything for the community or any other person, it would be on the basis of goodwill gesture, and not demands.
Nagbe continues that City Builders is a compliant regular taxpayer to the Government of Liberia and lessor from the Government through the Freeport of Monrovia.
“Although City Builders is a Trading Company, it still engages in Voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility in Liberia and will not allow any individual or group of individuals to depict where to direct same”, he argues.
He says as part of its Voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility to Liberia, management provides 80 recurring scholarship to Liberians, including arm chairs and desks to Marshall high school, assorted cleaning supplies and tools to the John F. Kennedy Medical Center, and construction of classrooms at the A.M. Dogliotti College of Medicines of the University of Liberia.
According to him, the entity also undertakes yearly community outreach program, food packages and feeding program during Christmas, renovation of Oum El Nour Liberia Drug Rehabilitation center, building community center at Hotel Africa in Virginia and construction of Marshall City High School building, amongst others.
The spokesman says management immediately called in the police and they dispersed the protestors.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Paco Yard, Freeport Community Mrs. Beatrice D. Williams, says she will meet with her people in the community to find a peaceful way to handle the situation. “I just saw the letter they wrote to City Builders, and to be frank, this letter is very offensive. I was not in the know of the letter until this incident. I am going to them now, so this issue can be settled”; Commissioner Williams concludes. -Editing by Jonathan Browne