‘I Will Not Be Intimidated’- Unity Party’s New Chairman Responds After Home ‘Mysteriously’ Burned Down


PAYNESVILLE – The home of Unity Party (UP) Chairman Rev. J. Luther Tarpeh was gutted by fire early Friday morning, leaving it completely burned. The cause of the fire hasn’t been established, but Mr. Tarpeh said he suspects a foul play.

In an interview with reporters, he said the fire started by 1:00 Am Friday morning from the garage where he had his diesel vehicle parked. He said the power supply to the home was from a solar panel source. According to him, for over two months, he and community members have not had power supply from the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC).

Mr. Tarpeh was recently elected as Chairman of the former ruling Unity Party (UP) at the party’s recently held national convention in Gbarnga, Bong County.

His home is few blocks away from the Rehab Residence of President George Weah, and that of his party’s standard bearer Ambassador Joseph Boakai.

 According to him, all efforts to get the National Fire service to intervene didn’t materialize as they were told the trucks were out of fuel, and when they offered to provide fuel, he said they were that the engines could not start and there was no water.

“We called the fire service and we were told no gas.  At some point when we decided to provide fuel, they told us no water and the engine couldn’t start. It’s unfortunate that our tax payer’s money is paying them but they cannot provide the service needed.”

He also told reporters that there was no casualties as seven of the eight inhabitants escaped and only one got hurt. He is currently at the ELWA Hospital receiving medical treatment.

The UP Chairman told reporters that since his election as chairman of the party, he has noticed suspicious activities around his home. He explained that strange black vehicles are seen around his home during the night hours; something his neighbors have also noticed and alerted him.

He promised to remain strong and not to be intimidated as chairman of the opposition Unity Party. He expressed frustration that up to the morning hours, officers of the Fire Service had not visited his home to ask about the source or to investigate what may have caused the fire.

Recently, the media reported that for the Past five months, the Ministry of Finance has refused to provide money to buy gasoline and fuel for fire trucks across Monrovia.

“We can see and hear about all the recent fire disasters killing people all over the place but we don’t have fuel and gasoline for trucks to go there, “a source at the National Fire Service cried out.

This shocking revelation comes in the wake of series of fire outbreaks in the same vicinity recently; leaving three children dead and several properties destroyed.