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I killed to set Nimba free

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Ex-rebel leader Senator Prince Yormie Johnson justifies here that he executed Liberians in mass, including officials of the Doe regime to liberate his kinsmen.
Sen. Johnson, also a former member of the Armed Forces of Liberia, led a brutal rebel war against the despotic regime of slain President Samuel Kanyon Doe in 1989 in which Doe was eventually captured and butchered to death.

The former rebel general has of late been very vocal against calls for the establishment of a war crimes court for Liberia, threatening that it could lead to chaos. He recently told his church congregation in Paynesville outside Monrovia that the war crimes court campaign would eventually become a fiasco.

Speaking at a recent County Sitting in his native Nimba, he called on Nimbaians not to support war crimes court for Liberia, as it would lead to another round of violence in what is seen as nothing but scare tactics to escape justice.

He urged the people of Namiba to unite for development.”I am calling on you people today, not to support any form of establishing war crimes court in the nation.” He pleads.He defended that he killed people to protect his kinsmen from being hunted during the civil war.

Speaking subsequently on a community radio station in the commercial district of Ganta, Nimba County, Senator Johnson called on the international community to ignore calls by some Liberians for a war crimes court.

However, the people of Nimba seem to be eager for the establishment of said court to halt impunity in the country. A group of aggrieved citizens who lost relatives during the 14 years upheaval stress that those who murdered innocent people should not go free.

Over 10 percent of callers on a local talk show support the establishment of the war crimes court, lamenting that they lost relatives in the war and those responsible for their death are today living better life, and boasting of killing.

Calls for the establishment of war crimes court here is heating up on a daily basis with several citizens, including prominent individuals being supportive, something they say will create an opportunity for perpetrators to appear in court.

Recently, rights campaigner Hassan Bility joined the conversation on a local radio station by calling for the establishment of a war crimes court, something which he says is a must.He notes that if those who committed hideous crimes against ordinary citizens such as likes of Senator Prince Y. Johnson, Representative George Boley, and ex-rebel leader Sekou Conneh think the calls by citizens for the establishment of the war crimes court will end as mere calls then they’re getting it all wrong, because one day, they will face the law.

By Thomas Domah/Nimba–Editing by Jonathan Browne

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