‘Mysterious’ Death Angers Gbarnga Residents

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The mysterious death of a 28-year old woman has angered residents of Gbarnga, including youth groups, who staged a peaceful protest last Thursday to demand an immediate investigation into the woman’s death. The residents have also called on the government to ensure that those responsible for her killing are arrested and brought to justice.

The decomposed body of Angeline Kolleh was found on August 7 in the Sugar Hill Community, a few yards away from her rented home. Police records show that Madam Kolleh went missing on July 7, but her mutilated body was discovered in a bush not too far from her home a month later.

The Commander of Liberia National Police (LNP) Bong County Crime Services Detachment, John Kelenso Flomo, told the Daily Observer that a 15-man jury set up to examine the body established “foul play,” adding that the lady was beheaded by her assailants. The alleged perpetrators, in an attempt to conceal their evil deed,  “threw the corpse in the bush, Inspector Flomo said, but investigators believe that the perpetrators might have used chemicals or formaldehyde to stop the body’s offensive odor from spreading all over the nearby communities.

During the cross examination, the jury also established that the lady’s head was discovered in a plastic bag along with her two legs in separate locations, while her private part was noticed to have been removed.

So far, he said police have arrested three persons in connection with the woman’s death. Among those arrested are Kolleh’s landlady and her son, and the deceased’s boyfriend. They are in police custody to help with the preliminary investigations. “The three persons were arrested based on extensive police investigations that carefully pieced together the recent calls the suspects made to Madam Kolleh before she went missing,” Flomo affirmed. “The landlady made a phone call to Madam Kolleh on July 5, informing her that her son had reportedly burglarized her room and made away with some of her things, while the boyfriend phoned her the the day she went missing.”

Upon hearing the news of the woman’s death, Gbarnga residents and youth groups on Thursday paraded the main streets with placards calling on the government to bring to book the perpetrators “who with no fear of God, dreadfully killed the woman”.

Moses Kolleh, the deceased’s father, said his daughter prior to her mysterious death, visited him in Kakata in June  and later moved to Gbarnga to work with a local non-governmental organization.

Mr. Kolleh, father of the deceased

“We are only appealing to the government to help arrest the people who did this to our daughter,” Kolleh said, adding, “Our family is downhearted. Can you imagine that my daughter was just 29 years and had no child? Now she is no more,” Kolleh said in tears.

“Who killed Angeline?”; “We want justice!”; “The killings are too much in this county!”; “Let the killers be killed!”; “Our women and children need security!”; “Enough is enough!” were some of the wordings  on the placards hoisted by the demonstrators.

When contacted, Bong County police commander Frederick Nepay informed the angry demonstrators that the investigation is “critical” and requires time and careful analysis. But, Nepay assured the family members of the deceased and the public that the police will do everything possible to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Nepay said the decomposed body has been turned over to family members for burial as police investigations continue. Some residents and rights groups in Bong County, including the Bong County Christian Association (BOCA), have meanwhile condemned Kolleh’s killing, and have called on the police to beef up its investigations.

This is not the first time for a murder of this sort to occur in the county. In September 2012, 12-year old Janet Harris went missing in Yarkporla, Jorpolu Clan, and a week later, her decomposed body was found in a nearby creek with several body parts missing.

6 COMMENTS

  1. The culture of impunity is reason for this kind of killings going on in Liberia. If those convicted of murder were hanged or executed for these ritualistic killings, then would be perpetrators will be afraid. So many precious lives have been lost. Unfortunately, no concrete actions have been taken against those convicted. This is particularly dangerous during election time in the country. These murderers are being held in various prisons around the country and being fed by taxpayers’ money. President Tolbert one time hanged Allen Yancy, Anderson, and others for ritualistic killings.President Tolbert also approved the hanging of a Nigerian national called Justin Obei for assassinating the Episcopal Bishop. This is the kind of leader Liberia needs who will put an immediate end to these senseless killings.

  2. One thing I can say to all Liberians and especially politicians, ritualistic killing is a
    crime the Almighty God does not forget. Those involved in doing such a crime
    be ware that they will pay their life to God one day.

  3. This is sad and stupid. Who told anyone that by killing another human being you can become chief or a leader? Ritualistic killing has been going on for years and no remedy found yet by government? My heart goes out to the parents and families of the bereaved.

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