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Drama at police headquarters

--As women assemble in solidarity with former Chief Justice Scott

By Lincoln G. Peters

A drama unfolded at the Liberia National Police (LNP) headquarters Thursday, 9 March 2023 after sympathizers of former Chief Justice Gloria Musu Scott got angered upon hearing a rumor that police had detained her.

The women groups mixed with former ruling Unity Party (UP) supporters and friends of Cllr. Scott converged at the police headquarters Thursday when investigators were due to further question Cllr. Scott and her family surrounding the brutal murder of the stateswoman’s daughter, Charloe Musu.

Police said they have identified Monrovia Mayor Jefferson T. Koijee and Monrovia City Police Officer Varlee Telleh as persons of interest following attacks against Cllr. Scott which led to Charloe’s gruesome murder.

Police invited Koijee and Telleh for questioning after former Liberia Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) boss Cllr. Jerome Verdier accused the duo of being the culprits in the attacks and gruesome murder of Charloe. Both Koijee and Telleh have denied the allegations.

Before Charloe’s murder on 22 February 2023, Cllr. Scott said she reported to the Minster of Justice and the police authorities two armed robbery attacks at her residence, but the authorities did not act to prevent the third attack which killed her daughter.

The attacks against the former chief justice have prompted public condemnation against the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC)-led regime.

The police took over two hours on Thursday interrogating Cllr. Scott and her family surrounding the gruesome incident that occurred at her Brewerville residence.

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She and her family were led by her team of lawyers in a small private black jeep at the police headquarters, while her sympathizers, including women from opposition political parties, drove in two big buses and others in private vehicles to make their way there.

When they arrived at the LNP headquarters, police authorities mandated that the rest of the women who had assembled to show solidarity remain outside the fence at the police headquarters.

The women groups dressed in dominant black and white, threw jabs at the police when they became fed up that the authorities had held Cllr. Scott and her family for over two hours in a prolonged interrogation.

But riot officers contained the agitating women at a specific location on their bosses’ orders without responding to their jabs.

While at the LNP headquarters, scores of Unity Party members headed by UP Chairman Rev. Luther Tarpeh also arrived to petition the LNP to speedily investigate the case and bring the culprit to book. 

The women were seen serving a hot cooked meal at the LNP headquarters and supplying their colleagues with bottled mineral water. 

They ate palm butter and potato greens soup and rice near the police headquarters. The women lined up in a long queue to get their food which was served from a vehicle.

While the food was being served, the former Chief Justice along with her family and her lawyers came outside of the police headquarters and met an overwhelming crowd of supporters outside.

The LNP authorities demanded that Cllr. Scott and her family be rushed out of the fence instead of speaking to the group.

However, the women were angered by the police’s order, and therefore, they rained insults at the police and branded the officers as CDC police.

Speaking briefly in an interview with reporters, Madam Marthaline Kollie described the LNP as partisan police that is allegedly protecting those in authority and leaving the ordinary people vulnerable.

“We went [to] Cllr. Scott’s house to sympathize with her. When we were there, she received a call that the LNP wanted to see her and that’s how we decided to come along,” said Madam Kollie. 

“But, it’s so, so disgraceful that the LNP will be behaving this way. We don’t trust the police and we know that they want to lie again as usual,’’ she claimed.

For his part, Opposition Unity Party Chairman Rev. Luther Tarpeh called on the Government of Liberia through the Liberia National Police to speedily investigate the case and make sure that the perpetrator is brought to justice.

According to him, it’s so saddening that Liberians will be killed in their country and family can’t get proper readdress and justice.

Rev. Tarpeh it is worrisome for the peace and democracy of the country.

“Actually, we didn’t know that she and her family [were] coming here today for questioning. We came here purposely to petition the LNP to conduct a speedy investigation,” said Rev. Tarpeh. 

“We want them to ensure that the person who did that is brought to book’,’ the Chairman added.

The UP chair said he hopes that this case will not be treated as the three missing boys’ case, the four auditors’ case, and Princess Cooper and the late Odel Sherman’s cases.

Meanwhile, Cllr. Scott was prevented from talking to journalists due to the attitude of the women who had assembled at the police headquarters.

She was escorted from the LNP headquarters and immediately taken to her residence as women threw insults at police officers.

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