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Editorial: Welcoming and Buttressing UNIMIL’s Warning

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Just recently, the United Nations Mission in Liberia warned national security institutions in the country against practical ‘politics.’ UNMIL’s wanting was mainly extended to the Liberia National Police, Armed Forces of Liberia and Bureau of Immigration, among others. The UN Peace Mission advised that no security institution should have political affiliations, most especially partisan politics.

Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Rule of Law, Ambassador Henrietta Mensah-Bonsu, through Kamudoni Nyasulu, Director of Legal and Judicial System Support Division, challenged these security institutions to commit their allegiances to Liberia and its constitution, not to any personality or political groupings.

The call of the DSRSG’s presentation’s posture suggests lapses at times  in security and divided loyalty in law enforcement,  for which she pointed in ensuring a ‘constitutional allegiance’, requires the protection from all partisan interferences and manipulations of these security institutions. We are of the strongest belief that UNMIL’s warning may be against the backdrop of a number of observations and information about the involvement of security personnel in politics, when they should not even be.

We at the New Dawn-Liberia, do share this concern with the United Nations Mission in Liberia, mostly at this critical time of our nation’s history when those in the security sector should only be providing protection for all people against illegal acts in accordance with Article 1 of Liberia’s Cannons of Police Ethnics.

According to this article, ‘The law enforcement officer always represents the whole of the community and its legally expressed will and is never the arm of any political party or clique’.  As enshrined in the Duty Manual of the Police, no police man or woman is allowed to affiliate with politics, except to cast his/her ballot.

Our own concern in support to the recent warning issued by the United Nations Mission in Liberia comes in the wake of a report from Bong County suggesting that the Chief of Motor Pool at the Liberia national Police, Wamah Korteh, otherwise known as Jones Allen was recently petitioned at his parents residence, east of the town of Palala, Kpaai District in Bong County. Korteh was petitioned as an aspirant to contest the representative seat for District Number Five in Bong County. He was reported to have also used his assigned Liberia national Police Nissan pick-up to transport a number of citizens from a number of towns to various voters’ registration centers in the district (see Wednesday, January 26, 2011 edition of the New Dawn-Liberia).

While we may not want to question the Constitutional right of the Chief of Motor Pool Wamah Korteh, it is also important that a line be drawn between his Constitutional right and his present career as a law enforcement officer prevented by his own Police Duty Manual to affiliate with Politics. Moreover, we  are of the fervent belief that Chief of Motor Pool Korteh must also be able to distinguish between a police man and politician being very cognizant of his Duty Manual, choosing  which way to go and not to submerge the image of the national security network.

We do, therefore, believe that the challenge is now before the hierarchy/top brass of the Liberia National Police and United Nations Mission in Liberia to investigate this matter, not jointly, but at different interval as a way of verifying such information. May we also state emphatically here that our business here at The New Dawn-Liberia is not to give a dark picture of anyone, but to report in accordance with the principles of good journalism by not only giving out the information as they come, but also to write the wrong.

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