— Says everyone is now politicizing it and not wanting to know the truth.
Liberia’s former Information Minister, Lenn Eugene Nagbe, has rebuked the families of the two deceased LRA employees, whose lifeless bodies were found in a car on Broad Street, for making “politically driven remarks”.
In his scathing rebuke, Nagbe, who now heads the Liberia Maritime Authority, accused the bereaved families of politicizing the issue instead of learning the facts, despite all efforts being exhibited by the government to be transparent with the investigation and have the families involved along the way.
In his rant, Nagbe blasted the families of Victoria ‘Gifty’ Lamah and Albert Peters, for been unfair by rendering unsubstantiated generalizations about the deaths, especially falsely accusing the government of double-dealing in the absence of fact.
“The deaths of people from the LRA followed all sorts of statements including [from] the wife. There are all sorts of allegations, condemnations and rumors of these people. Everyone is now politicizing it and not wanting to know the truth. You cannot begin to make unfounded comments, especially in a matter that involves your wife. By now the husband of the deceased should be interested in the cause and circumstances that led to the death of his wife, rather than going around making wild-cat accusations,” Nagbe said.
Nagbe, a fierce defender of the Weah Administration, during his tenure as minister, also threw jabs at the bereaved family for discrediting the government’s own pathologists who have been asked to conduct autopsies on the deceased bodies.
The former information minister further challenged the families and individuals who do not trust the Liberian pathologists to bring in “any pathologist to do the work from any countries including France, Germany, United States, and the government will agree for the pathologist to do the work. “
“Forget the two pathologists that the government spent money to have them trained because in Liberia, we don’t respect our own. Bring any scientists so that we can find out what caused the deaths. If you are not interested in finding out what killed your wife, go to politics,” Nagbe said.
According to Nagbe, the families of Mrs. Lamah and Mr. Peters and their supporters need to stop making unsubstantiated comments which are politically driven and give the government the chance to investigate the matter as they remain committed to investigating this matter to a logical conclusion. ”
“Give the investigation a chance, let us not politicize just everything. But if you are not interested, give way because we are under a constitutional mandate to work for our people. If there is a killer in this government, the killer will be found and prosecuted in this country. We need to give the investigation the benefit of the doubt,” he added.
Nagbe made the outburst yesterday at a farewell ceremony held in his honor at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism, just days after another spin that his successor, Ledgerhood Rennie, placed on the story last week in an interview with the BBC.
In that interview, Minister Rennie went to great lengths to try to convince the BBC that the four deceased were not auditors in a bid to change the narrative surrounding these deaths. By dressing down the deceased as mere professionals working in various agencies, Rennie is rhetorically dismissing the common thread connecting the deaths and perhaps rendering them as coincidental.
In a similar, and perhaps more flippant response to the first two deaths (Peters and Lamah), President George Weah took to the pulpit of his Forky Klon Jlaleh Family Fellowship Church on October 4, 2020, and insinuated that the deaths may have been a of a “boyfriend and girlfriend” issue and should therefore not be politicized.
“It is sad to know that our country, a religious country like Liberia you wake up and you see they killed people in car. Why, we don’t know; if that was a boyfriend or girlfriend issue, that doesn’t allow you to kill somebody because you don’t know where you will end up,” the President said.
Of late, the spouses of the deceased, Sylvester Lamah and Beatrice Peters have accused the Government of depriving them the opportunity to have an independent pathologist to perform the autopsy on their loves one remains.
Both spouses, who have long suspected the government for playing a role in the death of their partners because of their works, (to investigate corruption in government and expose it) have reportedly lost faith in the government investigation to the extent that they snubbed that autopsy a week ago.
Sylvester and Beatrice, like many others, believes that the four were killed in an attempt to destroy evidence that these financial experts might have found to be undermining the country’s Domestic Resource Mobilization efforts.
The families, according to Lama, trust in the investigations has gone so low not only because of the way the investigation is ongoing, but the many ‘misinformation’ being given to the public by the government.
“We continue to say as families that the process would not be transparent. The Pathologists you are talking about here are paid by the government – they work for the government… It’s a kangaroo process,” Lama told Sky FM’s in an exclusive interview last week on the 50-50 show.
Albert Peters’ and Victoria Lamah’s lifeless bodies were found on October 2, 2020, on Broad Streets in a parked vehicle belonging to Peters, in front of the Sacred Heart Cathedral. Eyewitness accounts indicate that the vehicles were brought to the scene and parked on the early morning of Friday, October 2, “by a huge man, wearing a cap”.
Both Peters and Lamah were discovered in the back seat of his vehicle. He was clad only in his underwear with one ear cut off and skin peeled off his body, according to his wife, while Lamah was discovered fully clothed, with even her makeup intact and with a broken neck.
Albert Peters, who was also a professional auditor at the Ministry of Finance, transitioned to the LRA in the same capacity when the LRA became autonomous. At the time of their death, Peters served at the LRA as Assistant Commissioner for Internal Audit, while Lamah Manager for Tax Payer Services Division, with the responsibility to monitor the inflow of taxes, which she reportedly performed meticulously.
Prior to moving to the TPSD a few months ago, Lamah worked in the office of the LRA Commissioner-General, in the policy division. She was involved with the compilation of all the revenue figures from all across the country, which would then be analyzed and published on the LRA’s website.
Meanwhile, Nagbe has warned that the attitude of the country’s opposition political parties is ‘disingenuous’ for Liberian democracy.
“It is shameful to you who profess to be lovers of democracy and yet refused to respect the tenets which accompany Democracy,” Nagbe said. “President Weah won on the popular mandate of the Liberian people and this you must respect. You cannot subvert democracy by unfounded protests and demonstrations.”
According to him, six months after the mandate, the opposition begins to attack the administration, despite receiving sound defeat with the so-called 16billion that they considered went missing.
Nagbe added that, while oppositions in other countries are calling for elections to be held, the opposition parties in Liberia do not care to for it.
“They want the December 8 elections not to be held and are planning to obstruct it. “You need to tell me that the people of Liberia are stupid because they are the ones who voted for Weah. If even you don’t agree with us but we have a mandate for six years,” Mr. Nagbe urged those in opposition.