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GeneralLiberia news

Dismissed EPS’ threats unacceptable

--Says Information Minister

The head of the elite presidential guard Executive Protection Service (EPS) Mr. Sam Gaye has defended his decision, emphasizing his aim to uphold professionalism and standards for EPS staff.

By Kruah Thompson 

Monrovia, April 23, 2024: Liberian Information Minister Jerolinmek Matthew Piah has condemned an unacceptable alleged threat by dismissed officers of the elite Executive Protection Agency (EPS) to disrupt the peace.

Responding to inquiries regarding the government’s stance on the EPS Officers’ threats over the weekend, Mr. Piah said the officers’ action was contradictory and unacceptable, especially when they sought the government’s intervention.

“How can you be asking for government intervention while making threatening remarks? We came to recuse, and nothing can stop us from doing so,” said Mr. Piah.

Recent reports have shown 29 dismissed EPS officers issuing warnings to disrupt Liberia’s stability if their demands are not met.

It can be recalled that the current Director of the EPS, Mr. Sam Gaye, dismissed 29 EPS agents on 1 June 2017 amid allegations of perceived loyalty to former President George Manneh Weah.

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Mr. Weah won the 2017 presidential election, and a report later emerged that the Weah-led government employed partisans of the then-ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) without adhering to legal procedures.

It is reported that the employment led to challenges in salary disbursement and hindered government operations.

Director Gaye has defended his decision, emphasizing his aim to uphold professionalism and standards for EPS staff.

The former EPS employees, dissatisfied with their reported retirement under Gaye’s directive, wrote to the House of Representatives in August 2017, alleging wrongful retirement.

They cited the National Security Act of 2011, arguing that their retirement should not include the years of civil war, and expressed discontent over the denial of waivers.

However, Efforts to summon Director Gaye to explain his actions before the House were unsuccessful.

 However, Minister Piah has condemned the EPS Officers’ actions as contradictory and unacceptable, emphasizing the importance of seeking justice through peaceful means.

Meanwhile, the Liberia National Police attempted to disarm the dismissed EPS officers, leading to resistance due to grievances over unpaid benefits and disputed dismissals.

The situation escalated into a serious confrontation, with the former EPS agents insisting that they would remain unwilling to turn over weapons in their possession unless their issues were addressed promptly.

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