Cllr. Brumskine departs for Liberia amidst rumors of pending arrest by the Liberian Government
(Statement Issued By Friends of Brumskine)
January 16, 2002
Cllr. Charles W. Brumskine
We gather from two well-placed sources within the Government that, to best of their knowledge, an arrest warrant has already been prepared under the guise of associating Counselor Brumskine with fighters of LURD. Our sources further indicate that the government intends to claim that proof of Counselor Brumskine's association with LURD is based on a mass- distributed email document of October 1, 2002, under the address of firstname.lastname@example.org, that included Counselor Brumskine on its list of recipients.
Counselor Brumskine has always refused to recognize or associate with any undemocratic process, especially the use of force to effect political change, because he believes democracy can only be achieved in Liberia through the Ballot Box and not through the barrel of a gun.
If the allegation of the impending arrest of Counselor Brumskine is true, then the government’s actions are designed to create an atmosphere of uncertainties for the ensuing elections, threaten individual peace and security, violate fundamental constitutional rights, and further justifies the call by opposition parties for an international stabilization force.
We are also concerned about the alleged scheme because, we recall that recently, the government employed “scare and intimidating tactics” in Grand Bassa County, the home of Counselor Brumskine, where
some citizens in the county, including the local Grand Bassa County Chairman of the Liberia Unification Party, were arrested and briefly imprisoned for supporting Counselor Brumskine’s interest in contesting the LUP’s nomination.
The information is indeed disturbing particularly at a time when the president has been making public announcements that all opposition candidates are free to return home and challenge him in the October General Elections, in a free and fair process.
While such alleged action by government will in no way deter Counselor Brumskine’s plans to return to Liberia, we believe such credible information, authenticated by very senior government officials, cannot be taken for granted and must be exposed for the benefit of the public.
In view of our deep concern over the alleged plan, we have informed the Liberia Unification Party, Friends of Brumskine, Inc. and other interested parties on the subject.
We believe the Government of Liberia, which was elected by the people, should be honorable enough to immediately abandon any plans that would disrupt the peaceful pursuit of democracy in our country. The government, through its law enforcement arms, should refrain from the continued harassment and intimidation of Liberians who choose to exercise their constitutional rights of free assembly and association.
The October election promises to be one of the most interesting and historic developments in Liberia if the government, acting in accordance with law, will allow the will of the people to prevail in the interest of all those who seek public office.
The president has the duty to respect the law, protect the lives of all Liberians and preside over a free and fair process in the coming months. Nothing less is expected of the president.
We admonish the government not to stage any event that will disrupt the political process and strengthen those committed to the use of force.