Chairman Teklo Maxwell Grigsby, II Officially Takes Office

Several high profiled officials from the government of Liberia, the international community, civil society actors, as well as the media attended the official turn over ceremony of Atty. Teklo. Maxwell Grigsby, II as the new Chairman of the Small Arms Commission.

Atty. Grigsby takes over from Hon. Marvin M. Sackor who was recently reappointed as Deputy Inspector General for Operations of the Liberia National Police.   

During the turn over ceremony, Chairman Grigsby said that the proliferation of small arms and light weapons pose a significant threat to peace and stability not only in Liberia but also in the sub-region as well.

The Chairman stressed that the increasing availability of small arms and light weapons has been a major contributing factor to the escalation of conflicts and instabilities, as well as hindering rebuilding and development efforts. Chairman Grigsby pointed out that the world and Africa in particular is experiencing many conflicts and insecurities in various forms because of the unregulated sale of weapons.

The illicit small arms proliferation, according to Chairman Grigsby is a big concern at national and international levels, stressing that all efforts must be exerted to address this problem. He told partners to collaborate efforts with the Commission to robustly combat the illicit flows of arms in Liberia and across its borders.

This Commission under my leadership, the Chairman noted, will make every effort to put in place educational and sensitization programs, and the implementation of relevant laws to make the citizens aware of the danger of bearing arms illegally and the consequences that come with it.   

For his part, outgoing Chairman, Hon. Marvin M. Sarkor, cautioned his successor to work assiduously in the interest of national security and the Liberia people.

Former Chairman Sarkor called on Chairman Grigsby to consider some of his plans for the Commission including decentralization, establishment of a taskforce on arms control, and arms inspection team to monitor various armouries sites in the country.   

In separate remarks, international and local partners, as well as civil society organizations described the newly appointed Chairman as someone who is already knowledgeable about the ECOWAS’ Convention and the damaging effect of the illicit flows of small arms and light weapons in the sub-region. Partners assured the newly appointed Chairman of their commitment and stronger bonds in combating illicit flows of arms in Liberia and across Africa.