Liberia News: INJUSTICE AND WITCH-HUNT

Monrovia-March-27-TNR:The Movement of Bassa Youth and Students has termed as injustice, witch-hunt, and tribal division the alleged plot by some citizens of Grand Cape Mount County calling for the dismissal of Debar W. Allen, Country Manager of Bea Mountain Mining Corporation.

There has been a series of protests by citizens of Cape Mount, one of the concession areas of BMMC, pressing for the dismissal of Mr. Allen for the company’s alleged failure to live up to the Mineral Development Agreement and other concerns.

But reading a press statement Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Paynesville City, MOBYS’ Secretary General Melvin AbleejayWloh said the action against the company’s Manager is appalling, adding that it endangers the peace of Liberia if care is not taken.

Wloh stressed that the alleged attack on Mr. Allen by the people of Cape Mount is not only selfish and divisive but has far-reaching consequences to stir tribal disunity among the citizenry of the country.

He maintained that this is uncivilized and violates Article 18 of 1986 Liberian Constitution and   Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1, 2, 3, and 4 thus calling on individuals involved to desist or face a resistance in defense of their kinsman, Allen.

The group through their Secretary General however stressed that the BMMC’s Country Manager is a United States trained professional for over 20 years, who returned to his country and used his expertise to bring the company to its current renowned status in the interest of the Liberian people.

“Our organic Law is straightforward on the rights of Liberians to live and work in any part of Liberia without intimidation or fear for their life. Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that 1. Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favorable conditions of work, and protection against unemployment.2. Everyone without any discrimination has the right to equal jobs for equal pay. E.T.C,” the Secretary General noted.

The group recounted that two years ago, it was a son of NimbaCounty, Mr. Jackson Soumie-you and today, it is a Bassa man who has been discriminatorily targeted in Grand Cape Mount, adding that tomorrow, it might be a Gio man, Kissi man, Kpelleh man, or a Kru man targeted in Grand Cape County if they fold their hands and allow this to breed in the society.

“We must all now stand together against injustice, tribalism, and witch-hunts or we get prepared for the new wave of disunity and conflicts engineered by selfish elements parading as lawmakers of Grand Cape Mount,” the statement indicated.

The Movement of Bassa Youth and Students against the witch-hunt of Debar W. Allen strongly condemns the act of injustice and the witch-hunt of a professional and prominent son of Grand Bassa, to be relieved from his position as General Country Manager of BMMC based on tribal intolerance.

The group noted that the discontented demonstrators raised concerns about count 14 among the 38 counts, which indicated that MNG/BMMC transferred the country’s General Manager Position to Grand Cape Mount County immediately.

“Moreover, they urged President Joseph N. Boakai to appoint Mr. Sando Wayne, who they believe represents the people’s choice. We view this assertion as lacking in patriotism, fostering tribalism and divisiveness. Regrettably, it seems they are unaware of the Mineral Development Agreement (MDA), which stipulates that Bea Mountain possesses the right to hire based on the labor laws of the Country, without discriminating against any Liberian,” the release said.

The movement emphasized that it is unacceptable for anyone to be targeted in his own country of birth simply because of ethnicity, adding that such behavior goes against the values of inclusivity, diversity, and respect for all individuals, regardless of their background.

“What is even more appalling is that the Government of Liberia, specifically the Ministers of Justice, Labor, agencies that are clothed with the authority to protect these specific rights of Mr. Allen, appear to be promoting such injustice in the name of “restoring calm”. What travesty,” it averred.

Hence, the movement calls on the people of Grand Cape Mount County who are divisive and egocentrically calling for the booting out top-notch professional, Debar W. Allen to stop their witch-hunt immediately.

The Secretary General of the group threatened that the citizens of Bassa will hunt down every citizen of Cape Mount holding top managerial positions in the Bassa region, to be precise; Liberia Agriculture Company (LAC), Equatorial Palm Oil (EPO), NPA Bassa Branch, Forest Ventures, ArcelorMittalLiberia, and others.

“We, therefore call on the Legislative Caucus of Grand BassaCounty, The Office of the Speaker, The Office of the Senate Pro Tempore, the Traditional Council, and the Religious Council to step in and amicably resolve the crisis and STOP the witch hunt for the betterment of our Country,” the statement concluded with authorization of Madison P. Zondo President Emeritus of the Grand Bassa University Students Union and Chair of the movement.

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