MONROVIA, LIBERIA – The Government has being called upon to collaborate with its development partners to educate the larger population about the Country’s Criminal Justice System.
Platform for Dialogue and Peace (P4DP), a National research and Peace building NGO, said the population remains paramount and deserves to be educated to be versed with the Justice System.
According to the Program Manager of P4DP, Kennedy Berrian, “assessment indicates that Montserrado, Grand Cape Mount and Bomi Counties have made considerable improvement in citizens’ education and knowledge on mitigation of conflict, crime reporting and taking legal action”.
Mr. Berrian made the remark at the United Nation Development Program (UNDP)’s ‘Rule By Law and Live by Law’ Joint Evaluation and Experience Sharing forum for 2019 and attended by community dwellers, students, security actors and legal practitioners, held December 13, 2019 in Sinkor, Monrovia.
He said in spite of the development, there’s still need to address challenges faced by the larger population to overcome by affecting the legal procedures and processes mostly remote dwellers and their stakeholders still lacks education and awareness in legal education”.
Mr. Berrian said: “Our Justice System has challenges on various levels in remote villages, particularly among community dwellers, students and their leaders on community and family level lacks the needed education”.
The ‘Rule By Law and Live by Law’ project has two phases and is intended to educate the population of the three counties through interaction with various stakeholders including the security actors, the police, immigration, the National Drugs Enforcement Agency and the judiciary.
In 2018 the United Nations High Commission on Human Rights (UN-OHCHR) initiated and sponsored the ‘Rule by Law and Live by Law’ project to provide legal education and supported by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and being implemented in collaboration with the Platform for Dialogue and Peace in two western counties, Grand Cape and Bomi Counties with Montserrado County.
The continuation of the project will help change the working of the justice system and create awareness for citizens to live in confirmative with the rules of law.
The implementing partner of the project is also providing legal counsels and other services to people in communities free of charge.
Mr. Berrian advised that peace building is a process and not an event, and therefore lauded the government including security actors and other stakeholders for the support P4DP and the donors for the success of the first phase and appealed for further support for the project to be expended and reached out to the unreached villages and communities.
Participants from the counties, along with the legal and security actors addressed issues, including legal procedures and court process, persistent Non-Support, rape, sexual and domestic violence.
Liberia, in 1990, experienced civil war for more the 14 years, resulting to breaking down of state structures , and the enforcement of the law , least mention the unique pre-war function of criminal justice system in Liberia.