The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

INCHR Boss Detests Using Young People As Militants

By Grace Q. Bryant
The chairperson of the Independent National Commission on Human Rights is calling on African leaders to desist from using young people as militants, especially during elections period, which he said is only intended to instill fear in the electorates and has the propensity to derail the peace process.
Cllr. Dempster Brown made the statement at a one-day lecture series to promote free and fair elections in West Africa to commemorate the 2023 ECOWAs Human Rights Day.
The program was held by the Independent National Commission on Human Rights in collaboration with the office of the Special Representative of ECOWAS Commission to Liberia under the theme: Guaranteeing the Elderly and Disable Rights to Access Food Amidst Crisis.
Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria will go to the polls this year in the respective countries to vote in new leaders in their parliament and the executives.
“I am also appealing to the young people. Don’t allow politicians to destroy your future, because you have a brighter future,” Cllr. Brown told the audience who were mostly students.
Cllr. Brown claimed that most electoral crises derive from the National Elections Commission, which is supposed to be an integrity institution, but would rather divert election results in favor of preferred candidates.
“Do not take sides because your institution is an integrity body. We don’t want confusion; we don’t want to run anymore,” the INCHR chairperson cautioned election management bodies in Africa.
We do not want any conflict that Boko Haram will use to kill more people in Nigeria. Our region should remain peaceful during the elections in West Africa.
The Special Representative of the ECOWAS President, Madam Josephine Nkrumah, called on electoral bodies to ensure that persons with disabilities and the elderly are inclusive of elections management plans that would ensure that they have adequate access to election materials, facilities and all information regarding the process.
She named food security, gender and social inclusion as some of the key priorities identified by ECOWAS.
According to the 2008 National Housing and Population Census, persons with disabilities constitute about 14% of the Liberian population.
She claimed that the population of people in Africa is faced with various forms of discriminations ranging from their rights to participation and inclusion to their rights to access food, health care, public facilities as well as their right to fully participate in decision making processes that affect their lives.
Madam Nkrumah said ECOWAS is anticipating in working with local structures that will aid persons with disabilities and the elderly to access food and response services and to develop a framework to protect the rights of persons with disabilities and the elderly during food crisis.
Meanwhile, the chairperson of the National Commission on Disable, Madam Dantonwon Domah Paybayee is calling on government and partners to do more to promote and protect the education system of the disabled.
According to her, the accessibility of the disabled community will fully participate in the election, therefore the disabled should be prioritized on the ballot boxes.
However, for the National Elections Commission; it says young people are important in the process, noting that to avoid violence there should be lots of things they should avoid.
Adding, “To avoid violence, you must make sure that you are not trucked from one location to another and avoid creating tension.”
According to him, the NEC will ensure to provide an open platform for people to acquire information and the government will provide necessary funding to ensure that they do all requirements to make the process free and transparent.
“We must ensure that steps and procedures that make up the election are understood by the public, because if we are seen lobbying in every financial corner, there is a probability that things will be compromised,” the NEC noted.
January 16, marked 17 years since Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was sworn in as Africa’s first female president, in recognition of this momentous achievement in 2016.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.