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US 2022 Human Rights Reports: Impunity For Corrupt Officials, Human Rights Violators Remain Key Challenges To Liberian Government

The United States State Department has released its 2022 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices with impunity for corrupt officials of government, and human rights violators by key elements in society as key challenges facing the Liberia government under President George M. Weah.  

The report among other things said, Impunity continued for government corruption which the government has made strides in but still continued to remain a major challenge to the government.

“Impunity continued for government corruption and at the same time, impunity continued for individuals who committed human rights abuses, including atrocities during two civil wars, as multiple investigative and audit reports were ignored.

Police vehicles deployed on street to prevent violent protest

The government made intermittent but limited attempts to investigate and prosecute officials accused of abuses during the year, whether in the security forces or elsewhere in the government” the report said.

According to the US statement Department 2022 Human Rights Report, there were reports that members of the security forces committed some abuses ranging from unlawful or arbitrary killings, including extrajudicial killings; cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment by the government; harsh and life-threatening prison conditions; arbitrary arrest or detention; serious problems with the independence of the judiciary.

“Significant human rights issues included credible reports of: unlawful or arbitrary killings, including extrajudicial killings; cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment by the government; harsh and life-threatening prison conditions; arbitrary arrest or detention; serious problems with the independence of the judiciary; serious restrictions on freedom of expression and media, including violence and threats of violence against journalists; serious government corruption” the report highlighted.

The report at the same time mentioned the lack of investigation and accountability for gender-based violence, including child, early, and forced marriage, and female genital mutilation/cutting; crimes involving violence or threats of violence targeting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex persons; the existence and enforcement of laws criminalizing consensual same-sex sexual conduct between adults; and the outlawing of independent trade unions or significant restrictions on workers’ freedom of association as other key factors facing the government of Liberia which need to be work upon by the administration.

Section four of the US Department also emphasized that Corruption and Lack of Transparency in Government are key factors undermining the Weah-led administration.

“There were numerous reports of government corruption during the year.  Officials frequently engaged in corrupt practices with impunity. On August 15, Minister of State for Presidential Affairs and Chief of Staff Nathaniel Farlo McGill, Solicitor General and Chief Prosecutor Sayma Syrenius Cephus, and National Port Authority Director Bill Teh Twehway were sanctioned under international law for their involvement in corrupt practices while serving as government officials.  All three subsequently resigned in September.  This was the third consecutive year in which senior government officials were sanctioned for corruption” the report highlighted.

See the full report here

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Bedeskoe Nyumah Tumbay Is A professional Liberian Multimedia Journalist, a Full Member Of The Press Union Of Liberia (PUL), Who Reports On All Sectors Of Society. He Has Several Years Of Experience In Journalism, Media Relations, Communication Consultancy, Video And Audio Contents Gathering, Editing And Production Among Others.

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