Just recently, we raised the issue of the increasing and alarming armed robbery in Monrovia and its environment. The issue of the controllable rise in such heinous crime organize and perpetrated by heartless drug-driven individuals in our municipalities was raised with the primary objective of stimulating the necessary and aggressive efforts towards the restoration and continuation of peace in these communities.
Armed robbers continue to intensify their terror against innocent and peaceful citizens either before or during mid-night hours and during early morning hours between 1 and 4’Oclock depending on the localities just about the time of the festive season in Liberia. A little after a week when we raised the matter, the Director of Police, Colonel Chris Massaquoi confirmed the alarming rate of armed robbery, blaming some personnel of his Liberia National Police of facilitating the heinous crime in Monrovia and its environs.
Now that Director Massaquoi is fully aware of the high increase in armed robbery and is claiming responsibility, owing to the fact that his own men are involved in the perpetration of the crime, the Government of Liberia, through the Ministry of Justice must move to right the wrong in the police, as well as institute and make practical measures to compromisingly reduce or put an end to such unfortunate situation.
When Police Director Chris Massaquoi assumed responsibility of the LNP from Colonel Marc Amblar at about this same time in 2011, he assured Liberians of his preparedness to fight armed robbery because he “knew where they were”, and surely he did go after the robbers wherever they were. And the Holy season was celebrated with the highest degree of calmness in Monrovia and adjacent municipalities, including Paynesville where the crime continues to be uncontrollably alarming.
To battle these drug-driven criminals for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year celebrations not only in Monrovia and its environs, but the entire country, the government, through the Justice Ministry must deploy a joint-Security operation to include soldiers of the Armed Forces of Liberia, personnel of the Immigration Bureau and Drug Enforcement Agency, as well as agents of the National Security Agency. Such special joint security operations must also ensure the identification of all “ghettos” not only in Monrovia and its surroundings, but the entire nation for possible raiding and demolition/dissolution, as well as arrest of owners and customers so as to restore sanity in our respective communities around the country.
While the LNP may be experiencing logistical limitations as its authorities continuous to complain from time to time, the inclusion of other components of the security sector for joint operations will further capacitated the police and create transparency in the fight against armed robbery and other crimes as we approach the Holy Season.
Moreover, the fact that the Director of Police could publicly confirm the facilitation of armed robbery, we sincerely believe that it would be in the best interest of the LNP, in terms of protecting its integrity, and the Liberian people if the LNP authorities were to equally make public those already identified as facilitators of armed robbery and other crimes in our society. Should these measures and others be considered and properly coordinated by the Ministry of Justice, there shouldn’t be a reason for Liberians to complain about an unwholesome functioning environment during this festive season.