By: Naneka A. Hoffman
The Independent National Commission on Human Rights (INCHR) has begun hearing into the July 26 Independence Day violence near the Embassy of the United States near Monrovia.
Ruling Coalition for Democratic Change-Council of Patriots attacked protesting students of the Vanguard Student Unification party from the University of Liberia on July 26 and wounded several of them, one critically was taken out of the country for advanced medication.
The students had protested against celebration of the 26 Independence Day, citing severe hardship and calling on the government to “Fix The Country.”
INCHR Chairman, Councilor Dempster T. Brown, says, the Commission has begun a two-day Public Inquiry to ascertain the cause, scale and magnitude of the violence.
Cllr. Brown said the inquiry aims to advert a re-occurrence of the July 26 demonstration and to establish a civic space for popular participation.
He noted the ongoing exercise is consistent with the INCHR’s statutory mandate to ensure the protection and promotion of human rights throughout Liberia.
He added that Article 3 (1) of the Act that established the INCHR provides that the Commission shall have the general competence to protect and promote human rights in the Republic of Liberia.
He noted that in fulfillment of the INCHR’s mandate to promote and protect human rights across the country, the Commission has invited institutions and individuals from the Student Unification Party (SUP), CDC-CoP, Civil Society Organizations (CSO’s) and the Ministry of Justice (MOJ). Also invited are the Liberia National Police (LNP), Press Union of Liberia (PUL) and the Liberia National Bar Association (LNBA).
Meanwhile, Cllr. Brown has assured that facts gathered from the inquiry will inform the Commission’s recommendations and advice to the Executive, Legislative and Judiciary branches of Government on way forward towards 2023 Presidential and General Elections. Editing by Jonathan Browne