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Police Inspector General apologizes to Senate

By Arthur Douglas
Police Inspector General, Chris Massaquoi
Police Inspector General, Chris Massaquoi

(mylbsonline.com/Liberia/Oct.7/2013)-Police Inspector General, Chris Massaquoi, has apologized to the Liberian Senate.

Colonel Massaquoi regretted wrong doing against the Senate and begged the Upper House to pardon him and other members of the Liberia National Police (LNP).

“I extend my heartfelt apology to Senator Dan Morais and other Senators for what happened at the Capitol Building last week,” Col. Massaquoi said.

The Police Boss made the assertion recently at the handing over of Liberia’s first Regional National Police Training Academy.

The new facility, donated to Liberia by the Norwegian Government, was constructed recently in Harper City, Maryland County by the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and UNDP.

Col. Massaquoi described the Police officers’ action as “spontaneous”, and denied any knowledge of police presence at the capitol.

The police officers’ action prompted the Upper House to write President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, requesting the immediate disrobing and dismissal of Col. Massaquoi for gross disrespect to the Liberian Senate.

The Senate also called for his subsequent investigation on mutiny charge.

Asked whether his apology was timely, the Police Inspector General said it was never late, though he did not have the opportunity to apologize at the time.

Speaking to reporters following Col. Massquoi’s appeal, Senate Committee Chair on Foreign Affairs, Dan Morais, said he has already conveyed the Police Boss’ apology to his colleagues.

“What I did immediately was to text all the other senators the open apology, and then await their responses. That will help guide whatever decisions the Liberian Senate will make,” the Maryland County Senator said.

However, Senator Morais failed to give his personal position on Col. Massquoi’s remorse, drawing on the point that no man is infallible.

“Well, absolutely to err is human. I’m a human and I don’t like to judge people. We have the laws of our country that must be followed. When it is broken, the appropriate actions must be taken”.

The lone senator at the program further added: “And when somebody offers an apology for what they may, or may not have done, it’s our responsibility as leaders to convey this message to those persons who need to know. So earnestly, I don’t have a position.”

It can be recalled that Col. Massaquoi was summoned by the Senate to show cause why he should not be held in contempt for obstructing legislative function.

Though he turned up, his appearance at the Capitol did not respect schedule as specified in the Senate’s call.

The Police Inspector General’s appearance at the Capitol was also marked by the presence of dozens of armed police officers who besieged the legislative grounds apparently in solidarity with their boss.

In spite of what led the Senate to summon the Police Chief, the presence of large number of Police officers on the grounds of the National Legislature is being publicly criticized.

Following the incident, several individuals described the police’s action as unprecedented phenomenon in the history of democratic governance in Liberia.

 


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