Free Counselor Tiawan Gongloe Now

By Winsley S. Nanka

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

Posted April 26, 2002

The reported detention of Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe by the despotic regime of Charles Taylor is unjustified. Mr. Taylor and his 'thugmaster' Paul Mulbah must release Cllr. Tiawon Gongloe without delay. The arrest of Cllr. Gongloe only buttresses the case of those Liberians that have stated in various publications that Mr. Taylor only understands the language of violence. Cllr. Gongloe is one of the most democratic minded Liberians. He has never used force nor does he believe in the use of force to effect political change.

It is a shame that Mr. Taylor and his thugs arrested Cllr. Gongloe. Unlike Charles Taylor who has never achieved anything honestly, Cllr. Taiwan Gongloe is an honest man, he believes in the rule of law and democratic change. He has lived by those principles through out his life.

Cllr. Gongloe has the right to speak about the sad state in which Liberians find themselves. The sad state of Liberia today is mainly due to the misguided policies of Mr. Taylor and his criminal gang in Monrovia. Cllr. Gongloe rights to speak out are guaranteed by the Liberian constitution. Even the so-called state of emergency cannot deny him those rights.

Mr. Taylor and his lackeys are making a sad mistake by believing that they will silence democratic minded Liberians by using intimidation tactics such as illegal detention, harassment and suppression. Neither Cllr. Tiawan Gongloe or other advocates for democratic change in Liberia will succumb to Mr. Taylor and his gang of thugs. Mr. Taylor and his followers must be aware that they are responsible for the safety of Cllr. Gongloe. They must also be aware that they will legally pay a heavy price for the institutionalized violence against the Liberian people and the plundering of the Liberian economy.

Mr. Taylor blatantly violates the constitutional rights of the Liberian people, and he expects Liberians to support his regime and the lifting of the limited sanctions imposed by the United Nations against his government. Although, the sanctions were imposed because of the war in Sierra Leone (reportedly over), it is a known fact that if the sanctions are lifted against the Taylor government, it will purchase arms to destabilize the West African sub-region and to suppress the Liberian people.

I am appealing to the international community to pressure Mr. Taylor to release Cllr. Gongloe. I am also appealing to the international community not to lift the sanctions imposed against the Liberian government until genuine democracy is restored in Liberia. If the international community does otherwise, it will be against the interest of the Liberian people.

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