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Police, LDEA ask P4DP for more Community legal education

Jos Garneo Cephas Sr.
Section of ‘Rule by Law and Live by Law’ community engagement held in Virginia Township Brewerville, Moulton Corner, Montserrado County.
Section of ‘Rule by Law and Live by Law’ community engagement held in Virginia Township Brewerville, Moulton Corner, Montserrado County.

MONROVIA, LIBERIA - Two law enforcement agencies of government want local communities across the Country to be educated about the laws to protect their rights.

The Sinkor-Zone 3 Community Policing Officer of the Liberia National Police (LNP), Dorah Sargbah, has warned that the law prohibits family members and community chairpersons from judging rape and grave domestic violence cases, but to report them.

Madam Sargbah further taught the community residents on the routine process in which police can affect arrest and how they should cooperate in such process.

The Community Policing Officer spoke Wednesday, August 15, 2019 when the Platform for Dialogue and Peace (P4DP), a Liberian research and peace building NGO, and the UNDP launched the phase – two of a community’s legal aid and literacy pilot project in Virginia Township Brewerville, Moulton Corner, Montserrado County.

The Project funded by the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioners(OHCHR)dubbed, ‘Rule by Law and Live by Law (RULLAR)’, brought together more than 200 residents, mostly women and girls, to sensitize them in understanding the working and application of the laws, instead of indulging in mock justice.

Besides RULLAR, P4DP is championing women sensitization and participation in County Social Development Fund (CSD) under the LAVI/USAID advocacy program. It can be recalled that study conducted in 2017 by P4DP and NRM Coalition found out that women and girls were not included in discussion on CSDF.

The two development partners, with funding from SIDA in 2018 implemented the first phase of RULLAR that lasted for six months in selected schools and communities in Montserrado, Grand Cape Mount and Bomi Counties.

The Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Commander, Martin Tumue, for his part, cautioned communities’ members to understand the workings of the LDEA, and join them to educate their children and family members as those who are mostly involved in related crimes at the community level.

According the Mr. Tumue, “we need your cooperation and together we can crack down on the users and dealers of drugs in our communities.    The law gives LDEA officers the rights to arrest, investigate and arraign before court, people accused of drugs related crimes in the country”.

The LDEA Commandant, therefore observed that in effecting their duties based on investigations and tip offs, the community people are the same people who fights against the officers, and to avoid arrest of their relatives.

P4DP Project Attorney, in charge of Montserrado County, Cllr. Nathaniel Mulbah, said:  “The first phase of “Rule by Law and Live by Law” Project has been successful by reducing violence and persistent non-support and abandonment of family by husbands in many of the communities”.

Cllr. Mulbah said they have processed numbers of cases in court and resolved several community cases through the means of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).

 


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