The Liberia National Police is the foremost law enforcement agency, mandated by law, to detect crimes, apprehend offenders, prevent crime and disorder, maintain law and order and protect life, property and personal liberties. Its establishment was in consonance with Section 180, Chapter 13, Sub Chapter “A” of the Executive Law in the Liberian Code of Law, Volume 11 of 1955, reversed under Section 22.70 of the same Executive Law of 12th, June 1955.
“There shall be established in the Ministry of Justice a National Police Force which will be headed by a Director, who shall be appointed by the president with the advice and consent of the Senate,” according to the Executive Law. The Law also set the administrative structure of the Liberia National Police as Director, Deputy Directors, Assistant Directors, a Senior Inspector, as well as Deputy Senior, Inspector, Sectional Heads, among others-something the institution has, over the years, sustained.
But since the Security Sector Reform process began in 2004 in Liberia following the country’s civil crisis, the administrative structure continues to be referred to as if Liberia was a former British Colony-something that continues to raise ‘eye-brows’ across the country.
Currently, reference is being made to the Director of the Liberia National Police or LNP as “Inspector General” of Police. Other positions as per the present arrangements are Deputy Inspector General, Commissioners, Deputy Commissioners, assistant Commissioners, as well as Chief Super indents, Superintendents, among others.
Regrettably and sadly, the current Director of Police refers to himself as Inspector General, while others refer to themselves in confirmative with the British style in contravention of the laws which referenced the Liberia National police. This unfortunate situation in which the LNP is engulfed, has not only resulted to a state of confusion among the population, but also police personnel themselves.
From a research the New Dawn-Liberia, the laws establishing the Liberia National Police have never been amended or whatsoever, since the Security Sector Reform process began in 2004. Attempts to temper with the laws, a few years ago, were vehemently opposed by the Liberian Legislature because they had no grounds for such action.
Yet still, authorities of the LNP continue to refer to themselves as the former British Colonies in Africa do up to present, as if they are completely ignorant to their own status a state whose laws evolved out of those of the United States. In view of this unfortunate state of confusion among authorities of the Liberia National Police and a few others, the interventions of the Liberian Legislature and President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as Chief Executive are required to put to a halt this mess.
The Director of Police, his deputies and other lieutenants of the hierarchy must be made to stop referring to themselves as Inspector General, Deputy Inspectors General, and Commissioner and so forth because they appear to intentionally know not what they are doing- in fact, they shouldn’t even be at the police because of their deliberate violation of the laws. The Director and others must tell us WHO CHANGED the administrative structure of the Liberia National Police and when?