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Lawmaker and former staff in shooting claims

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Montserrado County Electoral District #6 Representative, Rev. Samuel Enders and his former chief of office staff, Andrew Tamba Smart are engrossed in accusation and counter-accusation over a shooting incident in Kendeja town, district#6 in Paynesville over the weekend that left residents panicking and nervous.

No casualty has been reported but earlier report from the area revealed that the district#6 lawmaker narrowly escaped death at the weekend when his former chief of office staff Andrew Smart, who resides in the same community, allegedly discharged two rounds of live ammunition at his ex-boss Rep. Samuel Enders.

The attack reportedly occurred while the lawmaker was passing through the community to attend a program organized by the Association of Private Schools Operators in Liberia, held at ELWA campus in Paynesville.

Speaking to this paper in an interview Wednesday, 30 March via mobile phone, Rep. Elders confirmed the incident and narrated that Andrew Smart, his former chief of office staff had always behaved unruly, accusing him (Elders) of eating allowance for staffers during extra sittings or extra sessions held at the Capitol and publicly attacking him, which led to his dismissal.

“He hardly came to work and always drank and fought people in the Capitol for gas slip”, the lawmaker said. He narrated further that Smart at one time allegedly smashed his car, and wife’s vehicle, threatening his children. According to the lawmaker, Smart sometimes groped his private parts in public, telling him that he is not a man.

“I took the case to the Capitol and [Police] 102 but they told me to leave it.” However, when contracted for his reaction, Andrew Smart denied discharging fire arm against his former boss over the weekend, saying “No; I don’t know how to discharge fire arm; I never carried fire arm.”

Andrew instead, claimed his former boss sent armed me at his residence to take his life, forcing him to escape. He narrated that Representative Elders allegedly ate staffers’ allowance for special sittings both in 2018 and 2019, and that when he (Smart) approached the Comptroller at the House on the allowances, it was confirmed that the lawmaker received the money, adding, “because of that I was sacked.”

A middle-age woman in the district, who was allegedly on the scene when the first shot was fired, said Smart repeatedly referred to Rep. Enders who was passing through as a naked lawmaker before opening fire at him.

The eyewitness, who spoke to this paper on condition of anonymity claimed before taking firing the next shot, Smart asked her to step aside as he was about to attack his enemy.

Upon hearing about the alleged attempt on the life of Representative Elders, New Kendeja Town Community Chairman Mr. Daniel Suah, said he immediately informed the Liberia National Police Zone #8 sub-station in to bring the situation under control.

However, Chairman Suah noted when the Police detachment commander Prince Cassell arrived at the same; he made no attempt to disarm the suspect, as was anticipated by community dwellers. He said instead Commander Cassell took Smart to the station along with the fire arm.

The Chairman also stated that at the station, the Police made no attempt to take statement from him (Suah) as a complainant, but rather asked him to go home, as the suspect was being investigated.

Mr. Suah said that barely four (4) hours after he left the police station, he saw the suspect back in the community, threatening to make further attack on the lawmaker.

When contacted at the National Police Headquarters in Monrovia where he had gone to complain the lawmaker for allegedly ordering people to flog him, Mr. Andrew Smart made no mention of the alleged attack in the district. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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