OVER THE WEEKEND, the Ministry of Justice officially launched what is known as the One Year National ‘Stop Mob Violence’ Campaign organized by the United Nations and its security partners in the country. According to the organizers, the campaign is designed in a way that it will occur simultaneously in all counties across the country as its message is solely encouraging the public to use the rule of law instead of resulting to mob justice.
SPEAKING AT THE launch last Saturday, Deputy Justice Minister for Administration and Public Safety, Cllr. Wheatonia Dixon-Barnes, said the campaign targeted at discussing mob justice is aimed at restoring trust and confidence in the security sector of the country and is geared toward encouraging citizens to get involved. Furthermore, the Justice Ministry official said police officers should be police officers who will serve as symbol of justice in dealing with mob violence and encouraging partners to be more theoretical than rhetorical.
AT THE OCCASION, the leader of the Traditional Council of Elders, Zanzan Karwor blamed the increase in mob justice on the security. He cited the recent incident in the Red Light Community where police officers who abandoned their posts to direct traffic in that area for little or nothing from vehicle owners and drivers were bundled and grossly disgraced by the same police authority that had gone on inspection.
IN HIS REMARK on community and the Liberia National Police partnership the Deputy Police Director for Operations, Abraham Kromah said the campaign will aid the police quest in enhancing the rule of law, peace and security in the country. He admitted that the LNP has been a victim of mob violence and the issue of mob violence has lots to do with what one gets involved into.
THANKFULLY, WE ARE happy for this launch of this one year campaign against mob violence because for too long the lives of people have been taken away by other Liberians that this was the only way to “get justice” by people who have been accused of committing crimes. This lawless situation has become a culture that it exists in every community, as people always take the laws into their hands, whenever a person is accused of a crime.
WHILE WELCOMING THIS campaign, it is our fervent hope that the Ministry of Justice and its partners, or those responsible for this would vigorously embark on a public education and awareness about the danger of mob violence and concomitantly educate the populace on the issue of the due process and the rule of law whenever a person is accused of committing crime.
WE BELIEVE THAT if such approach is adopted by the campaigners, we are optimistic that this disease that has crept in our society would be curtailed, and that persons accused of committing crime would be dealt with in accordance with the law of the land, instead of using mob justice, which is unjust and unfair to persons accused of crime.
AS IT IS known under our jurisprudence, “one is presumed innocent until proven guilty.” Therefore, let all Liberians, groups and organizations join this campaign against mob violence, which sometimes people ignorantly refer to as “mob justice,” as there cannot be any mob justice; hence mob violence must stop!!!.