Human Rights Defenders call for the Resignation of Police Director Mulbah
February 23, 2002
Editor’s Note: Since the imposition of the state of emergency in Liberia, police brutality with impunity is on the rise. The latest victim is Counselor Frances Johnson Morris, former Chief Justice of the Republic of Liberia. Counselor Morris was arrested and humiliated by Police Director Paul Mulbah. Below is the full text of the statement issued by the Coalition of Human Rights Defenders in Liberia in which, among other things, they call for the resignation of the Police Director:
Liberian Coalition Of Human Rights Defenders Calls For Police Director's Resignation
Liberia Coalition Of Human Rights Defenders
C/O National Human Rights Center Of Liberia
152 Carey Street
P. O. Box. 38 22
MONROVIA, 22 FEBRUARY, 2002. The Liberian Coalition of Human Rights Defenders has called for the immediate resignation of Police Director, Col. Paul Mulbah for his failure to serve the public trust, uphold the law and protect the innocent. The Coalition observes that Director Mulbah’s tenure as Director of Police has been characterized by widespread police brutality, mayhem, intimidation of peaceful citizens, harassment of civilians/passengers, deception, tactical cover-ups and empty promises of investigation into acts of lawlessness by police officers .
The Liberian Coalition statement comes in the wake of the Friday, 22 Feb unwarranted and illegal arrest and subsequent detention of Catholic Justice and Peace Commission National Director, Cllr. Frances Johnson Morris by Director Mulbah himself. The Coalition contends that the fact that Director Mulbah immediately stripped Cllr. Morris of her wearing and threw her into a cell of males and hardened criminals without any explanation and due regards to her status as former Chief Justice of the Republic of Liberia clearly negates the recent assurances by President Taylor that civil liberties of the people will be respected in accordance with constitutional provisions during the period of the state of emergency.
The Coalition further maintains that it is unbelievable that at a time the government has committed national resources to the redemption of this country through the “Liberia For Jesus Crusade”, the Director of the Liberian National Police would elect to molest and humiliate an eminent states personthus undermining the efforts of the government and its people calling for divine intervention to save the country
The coalition further avers that as police director, Col. Mulbah has failed to institute discipline within the police as evidenced by the numerous acts of lawless ness by police against innocent people. Also punctuating the directorís administrative excesses is his failure to make reports public and punish perpetrators of police brutality against peaceful drivers at the Double Bridge area in Gardnersville sometime last year. Another case in point is the Director’s failure to charge two police officers whoallegedly killed two innocent students in Bong County. Also claiming our serious attention is the fact the director Mulbah in the early part of February, 2002 personally ordered the flogging of a commercial driver at the ELWA junction.
In the same vein, the director, in an arrogant style ordered the flogging of peaceful students at the University of Liberia and later boasted of his actions on state radio. Of late we are reminded of the illegal arrest and detention of two journalists of the Analyst Newspaper and issuance of threats againststaff members of the paper by Director Mulbah. These acts and actions of the director being inimical to hisoffice undermines the Executive Branch of government as well as the justice system of the country.
1. National Human Rights Center of Liberia (NHRCL)
2. Movement for the Defence of Human Rights (MODHAR)
3. Center for the Protection of Human Rights (CPHR)
4. Fore-runners of Children Universal Rights, Growth &Dev. (FOCUS)
5. Association of the Female Lawyers of Liberia
6. Civil Rights Association of Liberian Lawyers (CALL)
7. Liberia Democracy Watch (LDW)
8. United Methodist Human Rights Monitor ( MONITOR)
9. Civil and Human Rights Alliance of Liberia (ALLIANCE)
10. Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (JPC)
11. Center for Law and Human Rights Education (CLHRE)
12. Amnesty International ñ Liberia
13. Rural Human Rights Activists Programme (RHAP)
14. Liberia Human Rights Observers (LHRO)
15. Committee for Peace and Development Advocacy (COPDA)
16. Liberia Prison Watch (LIPWA)
17. Center for Sustainable Human Development (CESHOD)
18. Research and Document Center on Human Rights
19. Liberia Watch for Human Rights (LWHR)