PATEL’s Protest in Pictures

MONROVIA, Montserrado – Last week, a group comprised of major business organizations launched a protest to shut down the entire commercial sector in an effort to draw attention to economic issues.

Waterside Market at 7:25 a.m. on April 10, 2017. Photo: Zeze Ballah

Waterside Market at 7:25 a.m. on April 10, 2017. Photo: Zeze Ballah

The protest by the Patriotic Entrepreneurs of Liberia was scheduled to begin on April 10 and last until President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf addressed the group’s concerns.

However, it appeared that less than half the number of businesses appeared to obey the pronouncement, unlike the previous protest in February which largely saw universal compliance.

Several street vendors wait on the outcome of the protest before putting their goods out for sale. Photo: Zeze Ballah

Several street vendors wait on the outcome of the protest before putting their goods out for sale. Photo: Zeze Ballah

The group said the action is intended to get national leaders to understand the constraints business owners in the country were facing.

There were some concerns that business owners who did not participate in the protest would be harassed by the protest organizers and there was a heavy police presence on the first day of the protest.

The Liberia National Police deployed officers at Waterside Market and across the Monrovia metropolitan area. Photo: Zeze Ballah

The Liberia National Police deployed officers at Waterside Market and across the Monrovia metropolitan area. Photo: Zeze Ballah

A police vehicle patrolling Waterside Market, assuring marketers of protection. Photo Zeze Ballah

A police vehicle patrolling Waterside Market, assuring marketers of protection. Photo Zeze Ballah

Mikey Gray, deputy commissioner for public safety, assures the business community of police protection. Photo: Zeze Ballah

Mikey Gray, deputy commissioner for public safety, assures the business community of police protection. Photo: Zeze Ballah

Despite police assurance to marketers, many stores remained closed while others were halfway opened. Petty traders were mostly seen transacting business on the day of the protest.

By 11:21 a.m., petty traders had returned to their normal activities at the Waterside Market. Photo: Zeze Ballah

By 11:21 a.m., petty traders had returned to their normal activities at the Waterside Market. Photo: Zeze Ballah

A street vendor at the Waterside Market has already unloaded her goods and is in full selling mode. Photo: Zeze Ballah

A street vendor at the Waterside Market has already unloaded her goods and is in full selling mode. Photo: Zeze Ballah

On Front Street, a man cleans used shoes that he plans on selling. He had decided not to join the protest. Photo: Zeze Ballah

On Front Street, a man cleans used shoes that he plans on selling. He had decided not to join the protest. Photo: Zeze Ballah

On Mechlin Street, it seemed like any other day. Photo: Zeze Ballah

On Mechlin Street, it seemed like any other day. Photo: Zeze Ballah

At Payneville’s Red Light Market, businesses too are open. Photo: Zeze Ballah

At Payneville’s Red Light Market, businesses too are open. Photo: Zeze Ballah

Featured photo by Zeze Ballah

Zeze Ballah

Zeze made his journalism debut as a high school reporter at the LAMCO Area School System. In 2016, the Press Union of Liberia awarded Zeze with the Photojournalist of the Year award. He is also an Internews Health Journalism Fellow.

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