-Liberians Tilt Toward Security Expert James D. Hallowangar
The Liberia Immigration Service (LIS) is without a Commissioner General to date, since the passing of Col. Lemuel Reeves, and concerns are mounting as to who is best suited – in terms of having the expertise required- to take over the institution.
President George Manneh Weah is yet to replace the late erudite security expert. Why the delay is only known to the President who has the constitutional powers to do so, it is obvious the President will not just appoint anyone; rather someone with rich background in security, if not with the same qualities as the late LIS boss.
However, as this paper has found out, most Liberians are tilting interest toward former Deputy Director of the Special Security Service (SSS), now the Executive Protection Service (EPS), and former Commandant of the National Police Training Academy, Mr. James D. Hallowangar.
Considered as one of the best security experts with rich qualification, vast knowledge and experience, most Liberians think Hallowangar has the qualities -qualification and persona – to take over the reins at the LIS.
“The country has great men and women that well versed in security; one of them is James D. Hallowangar who has great depth in security. Besides, he is occurrent with the country’s security jurisprudence because he served two of our illustrious security establishments,” remarked John D.T. Mark.
According to Mr. Mark,a security officer, though it’s in the preview of the President to appoint who finds capable and shares his vision, appointing Hallowangar to the LIS as Commissioner General post will be a profitable and rewarding decision.
He said he has no special relationship with him (Hallowangar), but followed his activities at the SSS (now EPS) and the National Police Training Academy.
Also adding his voice to the debate, Francis Pennie Quasha said the LIS needs an experienced and qualified Commissioner General, not only to continue with the policies and programs of the late Reeves, but with the dynamism to change situations around.
“We have issues with porous borders; there are several entry points into our national domain. This is a situation that needs urgent attention and also requires someone who will think outside the box,” he said.
There has been other names in recent time like Gregory Coleman, former police director and current police deputy director for operations, Robert Burdy. Budy once served in the immigration service and is well respected too. Coleman, is the current Director for the National Bureau for Concession-NBC. Many people think he will not leave such a lucrative position for the immigration post.
For Asatu Bah Konneh, many think that she is totally off the radar.
On Hallowanger, when Francis was quizzed who he had in mind and could suggest to the President, he named Mr. Hallowangar as someone who possesses what the LIS needs to bring up to speed with changing security factors.
“I know Mr. Hallowangar as one of our best security experts; I hope the President will consider him to head the LIS,” Mr. Quasha said. He is a staunch member of the Congeress for Democratic Change-CDC who flew dwon from the states to run campaign for the party in Nimba, Bong and Gbarpolu counties .
According to him, the President needed to appoint quality Liberian, like Hallowangar who has huge security understanding to steer the affairs of the LIS.
However, Hallowangar who has two masters in security and international relations is aware of Liberia’s security burdens
He once said that no amount of men with guns can guarantee genuine national security, but rather the development of the minds of the people through education.
The former EPS boss also said the need to provide “decent security environment” for all Liberians after a decade of war cannot be over-emphasized, but that could be “amicably achieved through the total overwhelming and reforming of our security sector.”
In addition to his deep and rich security knowledge and experience, Hallowangar is said to have shared in the vision and agenda of President George Manneh Weah’s CDC.