In Foya, Lofa County, police arrest eleven suspects in connection to Friday’s violent saga
Following Friday’s mob violence in Foya, Lofa County which led to the death of a Sierra Leonean national, the Liberia National Police (LNP) in Lofa have confirmed to FrontPage Africa that at least 11 suspects have been arrested and are currently being held for their alleged role in the violent demonstration saga a fortnight ago.
Lofa County Police commander Anthony Weah told reporters that although the suspects have not been formally charged, they will be properly investigated and sent to court to justify their innocence.
He said mob violence is a crime under the laws of the Republic of Liberia and said violators will face the full weight of the law in a court of competent jurisdiction.
The Lofa County police commander assured Lofans that all will be done to ensure that stability of peace and security is sustained in the statutory district of Foya.
He urged citizens to go about their normal businesses as all efforts will be put in place to protect their lives and properties.
The Friday incident in Foya was in reaction to the mysterious death of a Foya central high school teacher, Stephen Falo Wondor, believed to be between the age of 30 – 35 yrs., whose body was found in a swamp with stabling marks on his side.
At about 8 a.m. on Friday, April 15, 2011, in statutory district of Foya, a crowd of mostly students and youths took to the streets of in protest to the death of their classroom teacher who was allegedly murdered by a Sierra Leonean national known as Augustine Mansary.
The angry mob allegedly killed the accused murderer and even took away his private parts. Residents alleged that the teacher and the Sierra Leonean national, believed to be in his earlier 30s got in a face fight late Thursday night where the Sierra Leonean [said to be a palm wine taper of the Limba tribe], stabbed the teacher with a knife, leading to his instant death.
According to them, Mansary had earlier accused the teacher of having love affairs with his wife but the teacher persistently continued to deny the allegation.
Ansumana Fayiah, an official of the Justice and Peace Commission (JPC) in Foya, who come out to calm the students said the angry mob threw stones at residential and other public building while cariying out their demonstration and indicated that several business centers were vandalized while others were set ablaze.
He said the Police in Foya could not calm the situation but rather asked for the intervention of civil society leaders especially J.P.C. to help stop the violence by asking the violent crowd to put a halt to their actions and make them understand that the mob violence is a crime punishable under the laws of the nation.
As the tension escalated, officers of the Emergency Response Unit (ERU) of the Liberia National Police and the UNMIL Jordanian contingent were dispatched on the scene but arrived when the students have gone to their various residences.
“My very self was thrown at and even some police officers were wounded while other places were set at fire. We were told by the police to talk to the students because they could not listen to them anymore and the police were not equipped at all,” Fayiah an official of the JPC in Foya told FPA.