Editorial: Senator Prince Johnson again
Former rebel leader-turned evangelist and politician, Senator Prince Yormie Johnson of Nimba county, who murdered hundreds of unarmed civilians, including women and children in the 90s during the peak of the Liberian Civil War when he shot his way to Monrovia is alarming threat on his life.
Executives of Sen. Johnson’s Movement for Democracy and Reconstruction (MDR) party alarmed here in a news conference last week Thursday, 2nd February that they received intelligence from a highly placed source of an alleged attempt by the Weah administration to take his life, a claim the government has dismissed as unfounded.
During the news conference last Thursday, attended by several executives of the party, including political leader Senator Jeremiah Koung, PYJ himself, and Vice Chairman Mensco Wolloh, the party said it has called on the international community to investigate the alleged threat on its leader. “We received intelligence from a highly placed source that there is an attempt to assassinate Senate Prince Y. Johnson”, Vice Chairman Wolloh alleged.
All of this is coming from the Nimba senator after he recently announced a departure with President George Weah for allegedly not fulfilling campaign promises made to the Nimba people. He had pledged support to Mr. Weah in the runoff election that brought the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) to power and turned the MDR over to the ruling establishment.
Specifically, PYJ accused the government of failure in releasing county development funds accrued over the past five years of the administration to Nimba, totaling millions of dollars. He also accused President Weah of breaking promises to employ more Nimbaians in government under the political marriage, among others as reason for withdrawing support to Mr. Weah in the pending election.
We are not concerned much about the agreement or MOU under which PYJ went into a political marriage with President Weah. But for the former leader of the rebels Independent National Patriotic Front of Liberia (INPFL) who sent hundreds, if not thousands of unarmed civilians to death thru summary executions during the bloody civil war, to attend a news conference about alleged threat on his life is laughable.
We wonder when did the senator, who is sanctioned by the United States Government for votes selling and buying, get to know about the importance of dear life that he took away arbitrarily from innocent, hungry and helplessly terrified people thru the nuzzle of his pistol during the civil war.
The likes of Tecumsey Roberts, a famous Liberian musician and hundreds of helpless others never had an opportunity under the watch of Field Marshal/Senator Prince Johnson to alarm about threats on their lives, as he trickled his silver pistol and abruptly ended their lives.
Laughably today, the man who committed some of the worst heinous crimes, including crimes against humanity like massacres, is calling on the international community for protection. In this sense, the evangelist-turned-politician is insinuating that his life is more important than the thousands he killed in the civil war under the pretext of liberation.
As a matter of fact, who is really after his life? Despite all of the atrocities that he committed against unarmed civilians, PYJ returned from exile in Nigeria and was rewarded with a seat in the senate, where he has served for 18 years without reporting any threat on his life, not even from relatives and friends of those he killed in cold blood. We can but only encourage PYJ, who has vehemently opposed calls for a war crimes court in Liberia to instead, muster the courage and allow to court to come so that he may have the opportunity to face his accusers and exonerate himself than raising false alarms.