Liberia’s Police Chief Col. Chris C. Massaquoi, says with challenges
in carrying out its tasks, the Liberian police need “more robust support from partners,” particularly stressing that the police’s scope of operation will now be extended upon peacekeepers’ full drawdown.
“Therefore, more assistance is needed to supplement Government’s efforts at this critical juncture of the country’s history,” Col. Massaquoi is quoted as saying in a dispatch from New York where he has been
partaking in a UN Chief of Police or UNCOPS Summit.
The organizers of the summit of global police chiefs say the forum is aimed at charting the way forward for the UN Police to deliver greater impact on the ground while tackling the policing challenges of the twenty-first century.
Mr. Massaquoi stressed that Liberia’s police operations will extend over the entire geographical boundaries, suggesting that efforts should be made to match the skills acquired over years with the requisite tools in order to ensure efficient policing.
He had earlier told a news conference that the police under his leadership are working assiduously to assume full national security responsibilities upon the departure of UNMIL. “I wish to assure you that the National Police is ready to assume fully its national security responsibilities. Recruitment and training of Police [are] ongoing with focus on professionalism and quality,” he said.
Mr. Massaquoi said enabling laws on firearms as well as police and immigration have been enacted into by the Legislature; adding that under the transition arrangement, the police have begun deploying gradually into various counties.
He however said such deployment comes with challenges, calling on partners to ramp up support for the Police to ensure that it is fully capacitated to assume its national responsibilities. Massaquoi held bilateral discussions with a number of development partners, focusing on the need to galvanize support for the Liberian Police. Those he met with include representatives of Nigeria, Germany, Argentina, Sweden Malaysia, and the Republic of South Korea among others. He described the meetings as constructive and promising.
For his part, UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon in a video message expressed thanks to the UN police for contributing to the Rule of Law, peace and stability. The Secretary-General said he has seen the difference being made around the world by the brave men and women in establishing the rule of law and paving the way for peace and sustainable development.
He said these are happening on a daily basis in some of the challenging situations on earth, noting that the UN Police protect community, bring stability as well as restore confidence. “The UNCOPS is a tremendous opportunity and a chance to meet the security threats in today’s volatile global context,” Mr. Ki-moon said, while thanking UNCOPS and urging that body to work for a safer and more secure world for all.