This week we look into the public closet of Liberia highlighting the profile of one of Liberia’s committed nationalists and the head of the Country’s Ministry National Defence, Brownie Jeffrey Samukai, Jr.; an Alma Mater of the University of Liberia.
“Brownie” as he is popularly calls by many of his peers and relatives took over the mantle of the Ministry of National Defence on the 16th of January, 2006 as part of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s first cabinet member.
Not been considered as stranger for the length of times and years he worked at that very important Ministry beginning in the 1980s; from 1986-87 he distinctly working within the G-4 Branch of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).
In 1991, Minister Samukai was appointed as Deputy Minister at the Ministry of National Defence for Operations. At this position he ‘was responsible for reestablishing civilian control over the Liberian army and established an urban response team to counter urban terrorism, a position he served until 1994.
In 1993-94, he served as commander of the ‘Black Berets,’ a paramilitary police force in the Monrovia enclave during the administration of the Interim Government of National Unity (IGNU) headed Dr. Amos Sawyer.
The International Crisis Group also notes that the Black Berets also fought alongside ECOMOG at that times,
notably during Charles Taylor’s 1992 assault on Monrovia (‘Operation Octopus’).
For his commitment, he was appointed Director of the Liberian National Police (LNP) from 1994–95, and appointed as Deputy Minister for Administration at the State from 1995 to 1997.
In 1998 he served on the AFL Restructuring Commission, where he was listed as a retired Colonel of the AFL in private business.
From 1999 to 2005 he served as a security officer with the United Nations, initially with UNTAET in East Timor, and then from 2000 with UNHCR and the UN Department of Safety and Security in Tanzania. At this international assignment he was responsible for refugee resettlement in Tanzania.
He is an astute personality with over thirty years of combined working experiences as administrator, military strategist, national security expert, lead strategist on Security Sector Reform/ Defense Sector Reform in a post-conflict environment.
Over the years up to present has proven innovative skills in dealing with insurgency and armed related violence, progressive international experience in managing large-scale human dilemma within a refugee environment, and he is a skilled negotiator with proven analytical skills.
He holds a Master of Science in Applied Economics (Fulbright Scholarship), The American University, Washington, DC, 1990, and Bachelor of Science in Economics, 1984, University of Liberia.
This week GNN-Liberia is pleased to feature this important son of the soil of Liberia as its Profile of the week.
Join us next week for another profile