By Stephen G. Fellajuah
Ahead of the much-publicized October 10 presidential and legislative elections in Liberia, the Ministry of National Defense has reiterated its caveat to all political parties, institutions, and political actors in the country not to dare cross the Democratic Red-Line beyond the collective will of the people if their dreams fall short by perpetrating violence.
Sounding the caveat at the 66th Armed Force Day program held at the BTC Barrack while reporting to President George M. Weah on the state of the AFL, Defense Minister Major General Daniel Dee Ziankahn disclosed that the Army will stand by the expressed will of the people in line with the constitution of Liberia.
He assured Liberians that as the country draw closer and closer to the general and presidential elections comes October 10 this year, the AFL will remain apolitical.
‘’Our passionate plea to political actors, institutions irrespective of their political affiliation, will be, don’t dare cross that Democratic Red-Line beyond the collective will of the people if your dreams fall short by perpetrating violence. You can rest assure, we will stand by the expressed will of the people in line with the constitution of Liberia’’ Defense Minister warned.
The AFL on Saturday February 11, 2023 celebrated Armed Forces Day. The Day is celebrated every year, to remind the country and generation of the many sacrifices made by men and women wearing uniforms.
The day also presents the tangible accomplishments for which the country has remained strong amongst the comity of nations and are also enlightened about the challenges they face when executing their constitutional duties.
The program was attended by members of the diplomatic corp including United States Ambassador to Liberia and many others.
The auspicious occasion was also graced by the members of the 54th National legislature including House Speaker Bhofer Chambers and Senate Pro-Tempore Albert Chea as well as other government officials.
According to Minister Ziankahn, in this vein, he admonished every political actors, irrespective of their political affiliations, to remain peaceful and civil during this heated process.
Speaking further he also urged and encouraged political institutions and individuals to pursue their dreams of becoming whatever they want, but the sad reality is that, their dreams, ego and aspirations, will more often than not, fall short of the collective will of the electorates.
‘’Finally, to the men and women in arms, as we honor you today, we extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to you for your loyalty, dedication, sacrifice and patriotism in ensuring the safety of our nation and its people.
“Remain focused on the mission and demonstrate supreme gallantry and professionalism through affirming your loyalty and services to the State as your patriotic obligation and constitutional responsibility in defending and preserving our common patrimony. Continue to be the standard bearer of the security sector and Remain a Force for Good’’ he added.
But, delivering his keynote address earlier at the program, the United States of America Task Force 46 Major General Pablo Estrada said that for Liberia to maintain it peace and democracy, the AFL should continue to be professional and apolitical.
‘’As Liberia looks to this year national election, they have to understand that the AFL has to be apolitical professional military that will continue to be a force for good, in helping to ensure peaceful election’’ he told the gathering.
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