Is ex-warlord Charles Taylor pulling Liberia’s election strings from prison?

By Charlotte Attwood BBC Africa, Monrovia|

Charles Ghankay Taylor, Ex-Liberian President (Image credit: AFP)

(BBC Africa) – Liberia’s former President Charles Taylor is currently serving a 50-year sentence for war crimes in a prison in the British city of Durham. But is he using that as a base to interfere in the elections in his homeland next Tuesday?

“If he was to come back today, I’d roll out the red carpet,” said Justin Luther Cassell, a 32-year-old man sitting outside the Pray for Peace Business Centre in Gbartala, central Liberia.

Gathered round on plastic chairs, drinking beer and discussing the forthcoming Liberian elections, the men here are clearly frustrated.

This was Charles Taylor’s rebel headquarters in the 1990s.

The former military base may be crumbling, with buildings almost completely engulfed by the jungle, but Taylor’s name is still as strong as ever in Bong County.

More than five years since the former president was sentenced for war crimes committed in neighbouring Sierra Leone, people in his heartland are still harking back to the old days.

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Source: BBC African Service

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About Cholo Brooks 10859 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.