Inspector General Massaquoi visits United States
In his ongoing efforts to improve professionalism in the Liberian National Police, Inspector General C. Clarence Massaquoi visited the United States of America. Mr Massaquoi traveled as part of a delegation of dignitaries from Liberia and was in the United States from October 28 through November 12. The Inspector General’s visit represented continuing work on his part to ensure the proper development of the LNP.
The purpose of Mr. Massaquoi’s visit to the United States was multi-faceted. One of his goals was to continue establishing beneficial contacts and relationships that would facilitate exchange of information and collaboration in various areas including:
- Information in all areas of police operations including training and equipment
- processes and procedures that can enhance public confidence in the Liberian National Police force
Itinerary of the trip
Upon his arrival in the United States the Mr. Massaquoi was greeted and welcomed to the country by Cynthia Lynn Blandford, the Honorary Liberian Consul General. During his visit the Inspector General met with the Chiefs of Police in New York and Philadelphia, two of the largest cities in the United States. In each city, Mr. Massaquoi was able to view and observe police operations and exchange ideas and information on a variety of subjects including best practices, with the leaders of each department.
Mr. Massaquio also visited the headquarters of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) in Atlanta, Georgia. The GBI is the lead investigative agency for that state. Mr. Massaquio toured the facilities of the agency, viewing the operations and gathering information on procedures.
Among the most productive elements of the Inspector General’s trip was a visit to the offices of Police and Sheriff’s Press in Washington, DC. Police and Sheriff’s Press is a world leader and authority in the area of secure identification technology. Mr. Massaquoi met with the company’s president, Frank Raiford, and discussed the benefits of utilizing secure ID technology within the Liberian National Police and potential solutions that can be implemented.
Benefits of the trip
This visit to the United States was a result of the Inspector General’s strong desire to bring about reforms and improvements in the Liberian National Police. The LNP force is one of the cornerstones of Liberia’s security after the United Nations troop draw-down. Developing professionalism at all levels and instilling public confidence in the force will be a major focus of the security agenda over the next two years.
Mr. Massaquoi is eager to deal with issues regarding conduct of some members of the LNP as well as corruption that has existed in the past. This trip has aided him in developing strategies for strengthening the force through a more efficient and responsive hierarchy, and implementing procedures and protocols that will increase the level of accountability throughout all levels of the department.
One of the high-priority areas is development of a system for secure ID’s for all members of the LNP. The Inspector General believes the use of secure identification technology would address the issue of fraud created by false representation and impersonation of officers. Such technology can also help to deal with issues of misconduct by members of the LNP. Utilizing secure IDs, members of the force who are engaged in misconduct can be properly identified and verified. This will enhance the process of following up on complaints from citizens in a more timely and accurate manner and aid in making sure proper disciplinary measures are taken when appropriate. Mr. Massaquoi feels that these benefits will serve to increase the public’s confidence in the department, which is critical to the stability of the country.
Consistency and stability within the force can also help with funding for the National Police through the proper policing of the country. With a well-trained National Police force that is free of fraud and corruption, the department will be better situated to follow up on collecting assessed fines that can then provide additional revenue to continue departmental improvements.
Mr. Massaquoi was also able to establish contacts and cultivate relationships that should prove to be of great value for the country of Liberia in the future. Through networking with Mr. Raiford, the Inspector General has gained direct access to manufacturers for equipment and supplies that can eliminate middle-men and reduce costs. There is also opportunity to procure capacity-building solutions that will be easily scalable and adaptable to other areas of government. These solutions, with widespread implementation possibilities, can yield tremendous savings for the country.The trip to the United States has allowed the Inspector General to get a first-hand view of possible solutions to the secure ID issue. Having the opportunity to talk with experts such as Mr. Raiford and view the technologies used by other police and investigative agencies in the United States, Mr. Massaquoi is uniquely positioned to develop ideas and implement solutions that will achieve optimum results and reach the desired objectives for raising the standards of the Liberian National Police.
Mr. Massaquoi wishes to express his appreciation to Global Alliance USA and its founders, Mr. John Sock and Mr. Kenneth Abraham. Global Alliance USA was highly instrumental in developing the itinerary for this trip and assisted with key introductions. The involvement and professionalism of Mr. Sock and his organization greatly aided in the success of this campaign.