Amidst a day of protest by hundreds of citizens, the Liberia National Police (LNP) has arrested several citizens, predominantly Muslims, who staged a violent protest at the headquarters of the police and the judiciary branch of the government.
Over 300 protesters comprising men, women and children during the early morning of Tuesday, August 3, 2021, besieged the police headquarters and the Judiciary, demanding justice for the death of their kinsman, a truck driver identified as Alieu Sheriff, who was allegedly killed by officers in Gardnesville.
The protesters chanted anti-police slogans, demanding that the police immediately disrobe the officers allegedly involved in the killing, and investigate and send them to the court to face prosecution for the crime they committed.
The protesters carried in their hands placards with inscriptions like, “We Demand Justice”, “Muslims are Liberians”, “Our Lives Matter”. They had palm branches and other tree leaves in their hands as well.
According to the protesters, victim Sheriff died last week while driving his truck after he encountered the officers, who impounded his vehicle.
The protesters said that when the late Alieu’s vehicle was confiscated, he tried to recover his vehicle when a dispute ensued, which escalated into a fight.
The demonstrators explained that the police used tear gas and batons to brutalize the victim, which resulted in his immediate death.
They pointed out that it has now been six days since the incident occurred, without the police providing them with the necessary information concerning the death of their kinsman.
The protesters, while demanding justice, became violent to the extent that they started throwing stones and pounding on other peaceful citizens’ vehicle, thus leading to traffic congestion and the impeding free movement.
Their action prompted the police to quickly apprehend several people, calming the police headquarters, the judiciary, and surrounding areas.
Meanwhile, a special independent committee has been set up comprising the Internal Affairs Minister, Varney Sirleaf, Gender Minister, Piso Saydee Tarr, and a representative of the deceased family to probe the situation.
Internal Affairs Minister Varney Sirleaf told the media that the committee was set up by President George Weah to investigate the matter as soon as possible