Grand Bassa County Representative Byron Brown says corruption used as an alibi or reason by those who organized, controlled and financed wars in Liberia, ‘has become number one friend of the very people.’ He did not name or make any reference to those he termed as aggressors.
Representative Brown says it is no secret that the instances of socio-economic deficiency engineered by corruption in the past, are graphically before the Liberian people.
He warned that an economically suppressed people will not allow themselves to be suppressed forever.
“We are witnessing yet another stage being set to plunge this country into tension”, Representative Brown said.
The Grand Bassa County Representative indicated that just as socio-political and economic suppression led today’s “bureaucrats” into action against yesterday’s bureaucrats, so Liberians must realize that there is potential for people to do same.
However, Lawmaker Brown said that would not be a desirable option. He called on state and non-state actors to act quickly to avoid the undesirable.
Representative Brown reiterated his call for the establishment of a War Crimes Court in Liberia, asserting that “aggressors and would-be aggressors do not deserve an inch because they will jump to go a mile.”
According to him, Liberians aided by some elements of the international community have given the aggressors an inch so they are taking their own mile.
The Lawmaker emphasized that in addition to what he calls excess baggage that hangs on the aggressors, they are proceeding in the same factions that destroyed the country apparently out of the conviction that they control means of violence.
Representative Brown observed that as the aggressors did during the war years, they are still prepared to put the Liberian people into blind submission because they are using tribal sympathy or kinship to threaten the country with war.
He called on Liberians, regardless tribal, religious and political affiliations, to say “no’ to attempts by the aggressors aimed at covering up.
Representative Brown maintained that the aggressors and would-be aggressors remain a serious threat to Liberians’ desire for conflict transformation which is crucial to the nation-building process.
He expressed the belief that when established, the court will help to give justice to victims of the wars and restrain aggressors and would-be aggressors from venturing into the war terrain.
Representative Brown spoke Monday at the start of a 4-day Human Rights Workshop organized by the International Service for Human Rights, in collaboration with the West Africa Human Rights Defenders Network and the Liberian Coalition for Human Rights Defenders.
The workshop brings together 23 participants from Sierra Leone, Guinea, Ivory Coast and host Liberia.
Also speaking, a member of the National Human Rights Commission of Liberia, Thomas Brewer, disclosed that Liberia has not been able to make report to the African Commission on Human and peoples since it rectified the instrument in 1982.
Commissioner Brewer said the government is making frantic efforts to remedy the situation with a call on the civil society and other relevant institutions to collaborate with the government in addressing the shortfall.
According to him, countries that have rectified the document are requested to submit initial report to the African Commission on Human and peoples after two years.
It can be recalled that Representative Brown recently submitted to his colleagues a proposed bill for a war crimes court in Liberia. However, it remains a million dollar question whether this bill will receive the blessing of majority lawmakers, as critical thinkers say there is no sign of passing such a bill because many government’s officials were directly and indirectly involved with the civil war.