Rebel Leader Extends Invitation to President Blah
Posted October 9, 2003
The leader of the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy(LURD), Mr. Sekou Damante Conneh has extended an invitation to President Moses Zeh Blah to visit Tubmanburg, Bomi County. He said President Blah’s visit will be in continuation of what he calls "confidence-building" between his organization and the government.
A similar meeting failed to get underway in Monrovia on October 1, 2003, when shooting broke out at the Paynesville Red-light area as the LURD leader was heading towards the residence of President Blah.
Several persons lost their lives during the incident and the city of Monrovia came to a standstill as businesses, public transport came to a halt.
However, the LURD national chairman addressing a news conference at his Tubmanburg headquarters on Monday, expressed disappointment and regret over the shooting incident, and termed same as "an organized assassination attempt on his life by the enemies of peace".
Mr. Sekou Conneh nonetheless assured President Blah of maximum security protection when he visits Tubmanburg, adding "there will be no shoot-out, intimidation or harassment on his convoy or any of his people by men in our controlled area."
Meanwhile, the LURD national chairman has been giving reasons for the delay in the submission of LURD’s nominations to the in-coming National Transitional Government of Liberia(NTGL).
Mr. Conneh said LURD is seeking clarification on the Accra peace agreement on Liberia as regards the issue of the appointments of Assistant and Deputy Ministers.
He said LURD is seeking clarification on whether NTGL Chairman Bryant will appoint people to these positions or the factions will do so.
He told journalists that as soon as these points are clarified by the ECOWAS chief facilitator Abdulsalami Abubakar who is currently in the country, his organization will submit their official listing to the NTGL.
Committing LURD’s support for the in-coming NTGL Mr. Conneh said " we will participate in accordance with the Accra Peace Accord and will be part of decision in the rebuilding process of Liberia"
He reminded the press to remain neutral in its reporting by writing balanced stories that will satisfy the entire population, saying "the press must be objective and focused if we are to begin the process of reconciliation in Liberia."
He blamed the press especially the print media for not reporting the October 1 incident the way they should have reported same.
"My house was set ablaze and six members of my entourage were killed. Others were killed for wearing T-shirt bearing my photograph and these were not reported" he wondered.