Liberia: Defiant CDC Supporters Occupy Monrovia
Supporters of the Congress For Democratic Change (CDC) on Monday defied government, when they occupied the streets of Monrovia carrying symbolic coffins of people
allegedly killed by state security forces on November 7.
The government said that the rally was banned because authorities of the CDC did not get permission to gather in what they described as “memorial”.
“By constitution, it is the right of CDCians to peacefully assemble. We will not prevent them from gathering at their party headquarters. We will however restrain
them if they attempt to get on the streets because they did not get the permission from the government to do so”, Police Spokesman, George Bardu explained.
But, despite the warning, thousands of CDCians took to the streets chanting anti-government slogans.
Some of them could be seen wearing black and white t-shirts while others carried palm thatches tied around their heads.
“We are not demonstrating, this is a march intended to express our grief for our partisans who were brutally killed by state security forces”, CDC Secretary
General, Acarous Gray said during the march.
On Monday, November 7, violence erupted between supporters of the CDC and riot unit of the Liberia National Police, leaving at least one person dead. But officials
of the CDC claimed more than three people died in the incident which took place on the “eve” of the country’s Run-off Presidential election which CDC boycotted.
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has appointed a special commission of inquiry headed by Catholic Nun, Sister Mary Laurene Brown, to probe the incident which has now
gone down in Liberia’s political history as “bloody Monday.”
But, the opposition has questioned the independence and credibility of the commission, alleging that those appointed on the commission are friends of the President.
Media report over the past week revealed that President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf had secret meeting with her defeated rival opponent, Winston Tubman in Monrovia.
Details of this meeting has, however, not been disclosed either by the government or the opposition leader.
“I do not want to second guess what the president discussed with Mr. Tubman. I know there was a meeting held between the two of them but I do not know what
was discussed”, Deputy Information Minister, Norris Tweh, recently told a news conference recently in Monrovia.