If the urgent necessary actions are not taken now by the Government of Liberia to sustain the already existing stability in Western Liberia, ‘things may just fall apart.’ This a a result of the brewing tension in Porkpa District, Grand Cape Mount County following the arrest and prolong detention of some Liberians over a farm land at the border with neighboring Sierra Leone.
Reports monitored in Monrovia from Western Liberia point to a dispute between some Liberians and Sierra Leoneans over a farm land on the Liberian side of the border, also claimed by the Sierra Leoneans, which attracted the intervention of armed army officers of the Sierra Leonean Armed Forces. The Sierra Leoneans had claimed ownership of the land, said to be actually be on the Liberian side in Porkpa District.
Perhaps the Sierra Leonean soldiers may have taken advantage of the conspicuous absence of armed Liberian border security at that bordering community to affect the arrest of our citizens more than a month now. What’s may even be more puzzling is the continuous silence of the Government of Liberia, even though citizens of Porkpa District had earlier reported the matter to the Superintendent of Grand Cape Mount County, Imam Mohammed Ahmed Passawe, as well as the Representative of Porkpa District, Momoh Vincent.
Whether or not the foregoing assertion by Porkpa District citizens is true, the latest news of a mass demonstration coming out of the district, as well as threats being issued by some Porkpa citizens in the district and Monrovia may not just be in the interest of peace and security in this part of the Mano River Union basin. Considering the brewing tension and whatever desires that may be imbedded in the planned demonstration, the urgent intervention of the Government of Liberia cannot be over-emphasized. The national security apparatus must begin to look towards the border community of Porkpa District, where some of our citizens were reportedly arrested more than a month now and continue to be held in detention in Sierra Leone.
We also think the attention of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf needs to be drawn to this security-threatening situation at the country’s Western border in Porkpa District, Grand Cape Mount County. At the government-to-government level, it would be prudent for the President Sirleaf to constructively engage her Sierra Leonean counterpart, Ernest Bah Koromah for verification and resolution, if confirmed.
While we do not want to question the revelation by the Porkpa District citizens, it is important for the Liberian Government to urgently verify such information with the Government of Sierra Leone at the highest level so that “things don’t fall apart” at the border again. Listening to the people of Porkpa District in Grand Cape Mount County now, must be an urgent security priority before it gets too late.