Presidential Aspirant Tiawon Gongloe Threatens Weah’ s Gov’t With Lawsuit For ‘Brutalizing’ Students
One of Liberia’s renowned Human Rights lawyer Cllr. Tiawon Saye Gongloe has publicly vowed to enforce his lawsuit against President George Manneh Weah and his Coalition for Democratic Change government for allowing CDC-CoP protestors to brutalized dozens of members of the University of Liberia students based group of the Students Unification Party (SUP) during what Was described as a counter-protest on Liberia’s Independence Day, July 26, 2022.
One of the students, Christopher Sivili was very badly brutalized by the pro-government militias. He had to be flown out of the country a few days ago for advanced medical treatment.
“We will institute the appropriate legal action to hold accountable those responsible for this mindless display of such a devilish force against the peaceful and law-abiding students of the University of Liberia.” In the release, he had called on the President to not only condemn this act of savagery but to take the appropriate steps to bring to justice those responsible for the crimes committed against these peaceful citizens.
Speaking to reporters at the Roberts International Airport on Sunday, August 7, 2022, Cllr. Gongloe who is also one of the presidential candidates in the upcoming 2023 general and presidential described the day of the event as ‘Black July 26’ noting that the Weah-led government has globally disgraced the country’s independence day, and therefore such ugly act must be condemned.
elections has branded President George Weah as a “domestic terrorist” violating the rights of his own people and has vowed to lobby the American government to withdraw the visiting invitation extended to the President.
Cllr. Gongloe, a founding member of the Liberian Peoples Part(LPP) who returned to the country Sunday, August 7, 2022, after more than two months touring the United States of America, told journalists that President Weah is a ‘domestic terrorist’ whose government instigated the infamous July 26, riot that led to several students of the Student Unification Party (SUP) being severely wounded and a student very critical.
“As you may be recalled it took more than two days before the government acted after we have condemned the action of the July 26 riot. And I called upon President Weah to reverse his action and even warned him that we will call upon the American government to withdraw the invitation extended him,” stated Cllr. Gongloe.
Cllr. Gongloe: “This is the first time he could be visiting the United States if he acts correctly. And we have the ability to stop that if he continues to be violating the rights of the people. We will bring it to the attention of the United States Government and appeal to them passionately to say that the US can’t undermine its importance in Liberia by inviting someone who engages in domestic terrorism.”
He reminded the American government that the United States is a country that is a champion democracy and respect for human rights and as such, it can’t be inviting someone who has started on the path of engaging in domestic terrorism against his own citizens.
He intimated that the students are going to file a legal action against the government and his law office is going to represent them. “The State will not go with impunity; we will take the necessary legal action against them. While I was abroad, I promised the students and we will certainly do it,” Gongloe emphasized.
According to him, the first priority of any state is to protect the lives and properties of its people. “But unfortunately,” he added, “the government that was popularly elected by young people is now introducing domestic terrorism and the first victim is the young people.”
Commenting on his US visit, the human rights lawyer said the trip was so successful beyond his expectation. “Liberians are ready for a transformation. The citizens want the country to be transformed into a better nation. That is the message that is resonating in the United States and because of that, I was able to visit 12 states based on the calls of Liberians. I was not paying my way to go those states; they were calling me.”
“People who used to be CDCians have changed; they are regretting supporting the President. If elections were to be held today, the President will not get 20% of the vote,” he stressed.
He noted that there is a high level of hunger because the country does not produce its own food, medical facilities lack vital pieces of equipment and medical supplies, while a lot of children are out of school. “That is why I have this broom as a symbol to sweep corruption and other vices out of government. That’s my mission.”
Cllr. Gongloe assured Liberians that when he becomes President, the Aid from America will be a phenomenon.
“Americans are prepared to assist Liberia with a lot,” he disclosed without giving proof. However, he boasted about having a very good meeting at the State Department of the United States more than any government official under this regime.
He appealed to Liberians most especially the young people, women and children to vote the government out. He cautioned the voting population to think twice as election is not about getting a bag of rice but making serious decisions for the future of the state.
The Liberian Peoples Party’s founding member said he is of the belief that given the harsh condition the country is currently faced with; the electorates will be informed by their condition to vote wisely.
The student protesters carried banners with the prescription, ‘Fix the Country’. Journalists, including reporters of this newspaper — Independent Pro Newspaper and online-TV, who were on the scene, also took to their heels to protect first, themselves, and second, their equipment, after all, no story worth dying for.
The chase ensued upon the arrival on the scene of members of the so-called ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) Council of Patriots, who hauled and threw stones at the anti-government protesters, who are mainly students of the nation’s highest institution of learning, the University of Liberia. The ‘supists’ fled in different directions for cover and their lives.
Where were the Police? After a little over an hour that the SUP protesters stayed near the US Embassy, dancing and singing anti-government songs, officers of the Liberia National Police, were not in sight until the pro-CDC or government protesters arrived on the scene and successfully dispersed the UL students’ protesters. After the pro-government protesters had dispersed the anti-GOL protesters, they read a statement to reporters in which they outlined the achievements of the government, particularly President George Weah, who they also petitioned to seek a second term of office in 2023.