PHILADELPHIA, Pa, April 16, 2013: The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas (GGAA) has reacted sharply to an article which appeared in the April 8 edition of the Monrovia-based Heritage Newspaper. Quoting an unspecified security report, the paper asserts that there is a frequent exchange of calls and finance from Krahns residing in the United States and Grand Gedeh to assemble at least four hundred ex-fighters, fifty percent of whom will be responsible to throw grenades and scare away officers at the Monrovia Central Prison, before breaking in to have prisoners released to join them in their fight in the Ivory coast.
The GGAA terms such report as repugnant, offensive, irresponsible and baseless; only exists in the imagination of the authors and management of the Heritage Newspaper. These allegations were designed to ignite tribal conflicts while exposing the peaceful people of Grand Gedeh to harassment and intimidation.
We are deeply troubled by the emergence of the so-called security report that selectively targeted Grand Gedeans in the wake of a planned demonstration by civil groups in Monrovia whose leadership has nothing to do with Grand Gedeh County or Grand Gedeans in general.
The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas expresses grave indignation over the dubious manner in which the Heritage Newspaper attempts to indict the people of Grand Gedeh in a way that challenges the paper’s editorial judgments. The publication is nothing other than yellow journalism and a dangerous scheme to sink Liberia into another chaos.
The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas remains committed to sustaining the peaceful course in Liberia and hereby rejects any attempt to use our people by group of individuals in a sinister design to satisfy their selfish objectives. The GGAA will continue to constructively contribute to the socio-economic development of Liberia, especially the Government’s health care delivery service.
The shipment of two forty foot containers of medical equipment and supplies to Liberia recently for use by public hospital in Grand Gedeh County validates our commitment to a peaceful and democratic Liberia as we strive to help our people rebuild our homeland.
GGAA will vehemently oppose, in the strongest terms, the resurrection of the malicious strategies of the past by some elements of the Liberian media which plagued Liberia in a vicious cycle of intermittent civil wars and will never be allowed to succeed this time around. The Liberian media has an obligation to ensure that the peaceful course of Liberia remains unaltered by demonstrating social responsibility in their reportage rather than engaging in blackmail and indictment of peaceful citizens particularly Grand Gedeans.
We are calling on the Government of Liberia to take urgent steps to ensure that the people of Grand Gedeh County are not intimidated by overzealous individuals and group of individuals as well as functionaries of the Liberian Government as a result of the mischievous publication by the Heritage Newspaper. We want to remind the Government of Liberia of its constitutional duty to ensure that all Liberians, including Grand Gedeans, live in peace and tranquility.
Meanwhile, the Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas is calling on the Press Union of Liberia to investigate the April 8 publication of the Heritage with the view of protecting and upholding the integrity of the Liberian media which has come into question by the Heritage article. While it is true that GGAA is an ardent supporter of press freedom, any scheme by some elements of the Liberian media to endanger the lives of our people must be condemned, repudiated and those behind any such design be exposed.
The Grand Gedeh Association in the Americas is committed to championing the rights and liberty of all Liberians and laud Grand Gedeans for the tolerance they continue to exercise in the face of the unprovoked attack against them by Heritage publication. We urge all Grand Gedeans to remain law-abiding and continue to support a peaceful Liberia.
J. Grody Dorbor
Tillman N. Collins
Editor’s Note: GGA press release.