Motorcyclists and other pressure groupings have with immediate effect canceled their planned major protest based on a proactive intervention from the Liberia National Police (LNP).
The cyclists, who are predominantly young people had earlier planned to stage a massive protest on today, Monday 21 September in the Trade City of Ganta.
The aim was to call for justice on behalf of their fallen colleague, Samuel Selleh who is believed to be killed by the ex-deputy commander of the Ganta Police Department in early March this year.
Police in Nimba have since arrested and sent the accused to court, following the alleged commission of the crime. He was charged with murder after a preliminary police investigation and placed behind bars at the Sanniquellie Central Prison.
Civil Society Organizations, youth groups, women, and other aggrieved citizens, not to leave out the family of the victim felt that the case is being compromised because defendant Kowo is yet to appear in court for a proper trial since he was being indicted in March.
Holding this perception constant, the motorcyclists and other disenchanted citizens planned to carry out the peaceful march on Monday in order to claim the government’s attention in launching a speedy trial.
Against this backdrop, a delegation from LNP headquarters headed by Police spokesperson Moses Carter, held an emergency peace talk with all concerned parties in Ganta on Saturday, September 21, 2020.
The meeting brought together stakeholders, aggrieved cyclists, and members of the victim’s family.
Mayor Amos N. G. Suah, of Ganta City, Hon. Amos S. Gbatu, Commissioner Bain-Garr Administrative District were also at the meeting which lasted for three hours at the Ganta Concern Women Center.
At the meeting, Mr. Moses Carter and the legal person of the LNP, Attorney Peter K. Gbanyah pleaded with citizens for the delay in the case and called on them to continually demonstrate patience for the sake of peace.
They also promised the family that they will make sure that the case is being proceeded with and be brought to a logical conclusion in accordance with the criminal laws of the Republic of Liberia.
Mr. Carter also confirmed to the citizens that Court proceedings will begin on Tuesday, September 22, 2020, at the 8th Judicial Circuit Court in Sanniquellie.
He called on the aggrieved citizens and would-be protestors to continually repost confidence in the Liberia National Police as they are going to make sure to stand with the family in their quest for justice.
” When we are a country lost one citizen, it breaks our hearts as officers because it’s our duties to protect lives and properties.” The police spokesperson lamented.
Carter applauded the victim’s family and other frustrated citizens for the level of resilience shown over the period.
However, Mrs. Nohn Tappia Dekpa, a senior member of the Selleh’s family expressed her deep frustration and disappointment both in the Police and the Court due to the manner and form in which trail of the case has been delayed.
Mrs. Dekpa, therefore, requested Mr. Carter and his entourage to ensure that the family lawyer can have a copy of the indictment sheet before Tuesday’s court trial else they will stay away from the process.
She said it is the indictment document that will assist their lawyer to plead on behalf of the family.
” As I’m now hearing that the case will start on Tuesday… I want you to make sure that my lawyer has a copy of the indictment document so that it’ll help him to work in line with the County Attorney if not, we’ll not go there.” Madam Dekpa explained.
“I no longer trust the County Attorney because he himself has admitted to us that there are too many calls from other big government people so that he’ll comprise this case, so I’m afraid.” She continued.
According to her, they have applied every frantic effort in obtaining the indictment sheet from the 8th Judicial Circuit Court in Sanniquellie but to no avail up to press time.
Besides, the aggrieved citizens in conjunction with the family are demanding that the late Samuel Selleh, who was also a 9th-grade student of Ganta YMCA High School be given a befitting burial.
With the trial now set to kick-off, the would-be protestors have agreed to disembark on their plan protest but insisted that the case be tried free and fairly so that the law can take its course else, they will have no other choice but to go on the rampage and ransack the county with a massive demonstration.
“We want to appreciate you, people, for this timely intervention, but we’re looking at this case process with our eagle eyes if anything changes we’ll still go-ahead with our actions, this time around we’ll be very aggressive…so as this case is about start please inform the judge to be fair in his judgment!” Mr. Abayomi S. Wiefue said.