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Rep. Kolubah defies arrest

-clashes with police over traffic violation

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Montserrado District #10 Representative Yekeh Kolubah was at it again on Tuesday morning July 21, this time defying the arrest and impounding of his official vehicle for allegedly violating traffic regulations.

The lawmaker official vehicle veered off on the opposite lane during the early Tuesday morning rush hour in Sinkor on the Tubman Boulevard as a way of beating the traffic. The behavior is very uncommon among officials of the three branches of the Liberian Government here when it comes to traffic violations.

They drive with excessive speeds towards the incoming vehicles on the opposite lane during rush hours without considering the danger these violations poses to vehicles on the opposite lane. But like many whose vehicles are more often at times use by family members who also take undue advantage of this unruly behavior-Rep. Kolubah’s vehicle was no exception on Tuesday.

So the Rep. Yekeh Kolubah’s Tuesday morning drama began when police attempted impounding his vehicle for driving on the opposite lane. When the police stopped the vehicle and noticed that the lawmaker was not the driver, the Deputy Inspector General of Police for Operations Col. Melvin Sackor decided to impound the vehicle.

In the middle of the controversy, Yekeh dressed in a maroon T-shirt and short blue jeans trouser, came on the scene and insisted that the police could not impound his vehicle and proceeded with his normal rants against President George Weah. He went a little further roping in the Deputy Police Inspector with insults.

Yekeh insisted that he was in the car and on his way to work (dressed in short trouser and T-shirt) and could not be arrested.

The deputy police boss, overwhelmed by his desire to show strength decided to effect the arrest of Rep. Kolubah, something the lawmaker resisted while jumping all over his car and pounding it. “My car can never go to Central” he said repeatedly while jumping up and down like a little kid.

Article 42 of the Liberian Constitution says in part that members of the Legislature shall be privileged from arrest while attending, going to or returning from sessions of the Legislature, except for treason, felony or breach of the peace.

But the unhealthy scene created by Kolubah yesterday raised many questions as to whether he was a beneficiary of this Article yesterday since he was not allegedly in the vehicle as at the time of its arrest as argued by the police.

The police claimed Yekeh was not the driver and occupant of the vehicle as at the time of its arrest and therefore was not being obstructed. The situation caused a huge traffic in Sinkor keeping many in traffic for hours.

The drama moved a little further down before the Foreign Ministry where the president currently resides after some members of the House of Representatives including Bong County Representative J. Marvin Cole and Grand Kru County Representative J. Fonati Koffa came to calm down the heated verbal clashes between the two public officials down on 12th Street, where it all began.

The two lawmakers had convinced the deputy police chief to drive at the compound of the Legislature, but approaching the Capitol, Col. Sackor insists that the vehicle be driven at the police headquarters instead.

Col. Sackor’s sudden change of mind to have the car carried to the Police Headquarters was greeted with anger and harsh words from both lawmakers who had come on the scene to calm the situation. He ordered that Yekeh Kolubah be arrested and bundled into the vehicle but no office pay heed to his order.

He was later subdued and agreed to drive on the grounds on the capitol building where the matter was handled amicably with the intervention of House Speaker Bhofal Chambers to resolve the conflict.

Mr. Kolubah and the police continue to have harsh encounters that date back to when he took part as a major player and organizing member in the two biggest protests organized against the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) government.

Besides, he is restless in his criticisms against President Weah and the administration which at times result in very bitter exchanges between him and other officials of government here. By Othello B. Garblah

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