Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has congratulated the country’s joint security forces for the arrests of a number suspected drug traffickers, including the commander of the president’s own motorcade escort division.
Perry Dolo, a superintendent in the Liberian National Police, was arrested Saturday along with three others as they crossed the Liberian border from Sierra Leone with about 315 kilograms of marijuana worth about $4 million.
An Executive Mansion statement issued Tuesday said Sirleaf was satisfied with the swift action of the joint security.
Information Minister Lewis Brown said Sirleaf is determined to rid Liberia of illegal drugs because they are bad for the country’s youth.
“I can confirm that, as a result of a join security operation, a senior police officer by the name of Perry Dolo, along with a Guinean national believed to be a member of the military and a Sierra Leonean national, were all arrested at a border point called Tienne, along the Liberia-Sierra Leonean border. The Drug Enforcement Agency has confirmed that they were nabbed with marijuana referred to as ‘compressed sensee’ to the tone of $4 million,” he said.
Brown said Liberian security, at the directive of Sirleaf, has been keeping a watchful eye on trans-national crimes, including drug trafficking.
“What I can confirm is that, a week or two ago, as a result of a cabinet brief in which the President was informed by a special task force that there were reports of trans-national crimes being committed across our border, the president instructed the joint security to step up their vigilance, and the joint security force launched what they referred to as a nationwide crackdown on trans-national crime, including drug trafficking and human trafficking,” Brown said.
Dolo is said to have used a vehicle used by the police to control traffic ahead of a presidential motorcade to transport the illegal drugs. Brown said the escort vehicle had been decommissioned and returned to the police for over two years.
“In fact, the particular vehicle, which is still parked on the grounds of the Drug Enforcement Agency, is labeled as ‘Police Escort Car.’ This car is now proven to be the car used and decommissioned over two years out of the presidential motorcade. But, most people simply refer to it as part of the presidential motorcade because it has written on it ‘police escort,’” Brown said.
He said the President is excited that the police were able to arrest one of their own instead of being involved in drug trafficking and covering it up.
“Whether you are at the head of the presidential convoy or at the tail of the presidential convoy, if you violate the law, you will be made to answer to the law,” Brown said.
Brown said the Mano River Union, which comprises Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Ivory Coast, has been experiencing an increase in drug trafficking through Liberia.
“We do not like this. We want to do what we can to rid our country of this scourge. It’s not good for our young people; it’s not good for the future of this country,” Brown said.
Butty interview with Brown