Grand Gedeh Association condemns the Arrest and Torture of Counselor Tiawon Gongloe
(Statement Issued on April 30, 2002)
Posted May 2, 2002
The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas, Inc. condemns, in the strongest possible term, the arrest and torture of counselor Tiawon Gongloe. We are disturbed that counselor Gonglor was tortured while in the custody of the Liberian police. We call on the Government of Liberia to immediately release Cllr. Gongloe and bring to justice those who are responsible for this barbaric act.
The attack on Cllr. Gongloe is really an attack on all freedom-loving and patriotic Liberians, and the latest in a long list of unjustified arrests and tortures of innocent Liberians by government of Liberia security. In 1997, the government security massacred, in cold blood, more than 300 Krahn women and children on Camp Johnson Road in Monrovia. The crime of the government’s victims is that they have the courage and patriotism to speak out on issues that adversely affect the country.
The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas is also seriously disturbed by reports that the government of Liberia has ordered the closure of the weekly Analyst newspaper, which printed excerpts of a speech delivered by counselor Gongloe. We call for the immediate reopening of the newspaper, and ask the government to allow staff of the paper free access to their facilities, as guaranteed by the Liberian constitution.
These acts of persecution, intimidation and harassment of civil society and the media are solely designed to silence all meaningful opposition and keep our country down the road of destruction and lawlessness. They must stop! We call on all Liberians to let Mr. Taylor know, in no uncertain terms, that enough is enough!
We call on President Charles Taylor to create a climate for a peaceful political process and change. His government’s intolerance of genuine disagreement with its policies, and total disregard for the rights and welfare of the Liberian people only plays in the hands of those who see no hope in political dialogue and may, therefore, result to other means to effect change. Enough damage has been done and it is about time that we begin in earnest to turn away from the path of lawlessness towards real nation-building.
William G. Nyanue
Grand Gedeh Association In The Americas, Inc.
9066 West Church Street
Des Plaines, Illinois 60016
TEL. (847) 298-5523