Marketers clash outside court

Violence nearly erupted outside the Civil Liberia Court in Monrovia when two opposing groups standing for and against Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor’s use of force to remove Liberia Marketing Association (LMA) officials from office held protests with clashing messages.

Markers loyal to Madam Taylor protested Wednesday, 26 September in demand of an audit against the administration of suspended LMA president Alice Yeebahn; while Alice’s supporters staged a counter protest for her reinstatement before the audit is conducted.

This paper saw two men among the protesters in some physical encounters harsh verbal exchanges, but they were swiftly prevented from further attacking each other by some of the protesters on the scene.
A lady held a placard that read: “Alice must leave the L.M.A to save the institution.” And man also held a placard reading: “We will not rest until Alice be Audited! Audited! Audited!”

One of those supporting Madam Taylor’s decision, Cecelia Blamo says they do not want Alice, and demands that the suspended LMA official be audited.

She claims that Alice did not make use of money that they paid to the association, complaining that they lack restrooms and sweepers at their market places, and other things. She argues that Alice cannot be in office while being audited.

But a supporter of Alice Mr. Monueh Dennis, a marketer from Redemption Day Market along the Somalia Drive accuses Vice President Taylor of allegedly removing Alice from office “unlawfully.”He alleges that Vice President Taylor “carried gunmen” to pull Alice out of office.

Dennis says they are not against audit, but they are against the manner in which Vice President Taylor moved in by allegedly using the very people that complained Alice to sit over the matter.“We say no, you can’t be a player, and be a referee,” Dennis continues, saying it is better for different people to go and preside over the audit at LMA.

Madam Taylor suspended LMA president Madam Yeebahn; LMA vice president Abraham Barchue; and LMA Assistant Secretary General Madam Lawuo Hiami.Madam Taylor’s office says she suspended the officials due to alleged perennial allegations of corruption, financial mismanagement, misappropriation of resources and other acts inimical to the existence of the Association.

She set up an interim leadership at the LMA, including Mr. Jerry V. Geedeh and Madam Henrietta Zorpoe, representing the LMA Board; Madam Antoinette N. Mulbah, representing the Executive Committee of the LMA; Madam Cecelia G. Wuduwelh, representing the aggrieved party; and Mr. David Weah, representing LMA County Superintendents.

Some officers at the Civil Law Court have told this paper that the Court was due to make a decision Wednesday morning, 26 September following a complaint said to be filed by the suspended LMA officials. But they indicated that the ruling was not made Wednesday morning due to some matter unrelated to the case at bar.

By Winston W. Parley

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