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Third eye on LDEA’s operation

Monrovia: Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency receives praises for recent raids in communities, confiscation of huge quantities of dangerous narcotic substances and suspects.

However, some community residents are skeptical about the LDEA’s operations, judging from past experiences.    

By Kruah Thompson

Tuesday, February 27- Several residents of Monrovia have expressed concerns and doubts over the effectiveness and outcomes of the recent operations conducted by the Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) in neighborhoods across the city.

Despite the Agency’s intensified efforts in combating narcotics trafficking with recent strings of successes, resulting in multiple arrests and significant drug seizures, many residents remain skeptical about the long-term impact and accountability of these raids.

Their skepticism arises amidst the backdrop of a history marked by challenges in prosecuting high-profile drug cases and demanding accountability from individuals caught in illicit drug activities.

One resident, who preferred to remain anonymous, expressed doubts, stating, “We’ve seen these crackdowns before, but what happens after the arrests? Will the perpetrators face justice, or will they slip through the cracks once again?”

Drug cases in Liberia are difficult to handle by Liberian security. It is further stated that some individuals who are attempting to impress their new bosses whether President Joseph Nyuma Boakai or the LDEA’s new director AB Kromah are the very ones distributing the substances back into the community. 

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“If one visits the ghettos, it will be shocking to see some of them actively participating in the process,” the source noted further stating that most of the LDEA officers have associates who sell for them in various ghettos across the country, and after carrying on raids, some of the drugs seized are redistributed.

Most of the various community members we spoke with fear that despite the current visible efforts by the Agency, the ultimate outcome might not address the root causes of drug trafficking or hold accountable those responsible for perpetuating the illegal trade.

James Washington, a member of the Fiamah community, Sinkor told this publication that, the LDEA and the press openly declaring to the public that they were assisted by the community might even create harm for residents something, he believes should be kept a secret.

One of the focal points of their skepticism revolves around previous cases, notably the infamous 100 million cocaine case under the former Weah administration, which left many citizens disillusioned with the justice system’s ability to effectively prosecute and convict individuals involved in large-scale drug operations.

While acknowledging the Agency’s recent successes and dedication of law enforcement personnel, Mr. Washington emphasizes the importance of transparency, accountability, and follow-through in ensuring that the apprehended suspects are prosecuted and justice is served.

He further questioned the capacity of the legal system to handle and successfully prosecute complex drug cases, pointing to past instances where cases faltered due to legal loopholes, lack of evidence, or insufficient judicial oversight, leading to the release of suspects and undermining public confidence in the justice system

Meanwhile, despite these concerns, some citizens remain hopeful that with concerted efforts and a commitment to transparency and accountability, the LDEA can make significant strides in curbing drug trafficking and ensuring justice for those affected communities across Liberia. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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