Near-Nude Widows Protest At Capitol
By Alva Mulbah Wolokolie
Several widows of soldiers of the defunct Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) yesterday staged another protest on the grounds of the Capitol Building in effort to draw the attention of the legislators to their plight.
They claimed that government has several benefits for them after their husbands died in battle during the country’s civil war.
About a year or two ago under the leadership of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the Ministry of Defense administered thousands of United States dollars to former soldiers and widows of former soldiers as packages.
After several payments were done affecting the 15 political sub-division of the country, the government decided to close the book on such payment and announced that it does not own any former soldiers a dime again.
That statement did not go down well with the former soldiers and widows. They however hired a lawyer and proceeded to court. At the court, after series of legal arguments, government won the case against them.
In 2013, December, they threatened to disrupt activities marking the celebration of Christ’s birthday despite the ruling from the court but that did not happen.
This year, they have reawakened their spirits by staging a sit-in protest at the Capitol Building facing the front view of the Executive Mansion thus blocking the passage of lawmakers’ vehicles from either arriving or departing the compound of the Building.
The women yesterday first entered the Capitol Building with their clothes on but when they could not get the attention of the lawmakers and other staffers, they decided to undress themselves displaying essential parts of the bodies to onlookers.
They were there for about three hours running from one point to another throwing stones at journalists who gathered to report the scenario.
Nobody from the Senate or the House leaderships went out to talk with them, so they dispersed peacefully.