GOL Paid Fonati Koffa over US$750K to Prosecute the Global Witness Case

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Prior to becoming an elected official, Rep. Fonati Koffa led the task force that prosecuted those indicted by the Global Witness alleged bribery report

Leaked documents in the possession of the Daily Observer reveal that the Government of Liberia, under the directive of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, approved well over US$750,000 to the Special Presidential Task Force (SPTF), led by Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa, to prosecute individuals indicted in the Sable Mining bribery allegations reported by Global Witness. Those indicted are alleged to have been partakers of a US$900,000 bribery and conspiracy by the owners of Sable Mining, a UK-based firm.  Global Witness alleged that Sable Mining, through their Liberian lawyers, Sherman & Sherman, including Cllr. Varney G. Sherman himself, conspired to alter Liberia’s Public Procurement and Concession law increase the mining company’s chances at acquiring a concession to mine iron ore in the Wologizi mountain, Lofa County. Although none of the allegations have been proven so far, the following documents show a trail of requests and approvals of hundreds of thousands of cash between October 10, 2016 and October 23, 2017 (yes, after the first round of the 2017 elections) to fund the trial and re-trial of Cllr. Sherman and others.

1. October 10, 2016: Cllr. Koffa Requests adjustment to a US$500,000 cash plan

 

 

2. May 29, 2017: Cllr. Koffa requests funding for retrial of Cllr. Varney Sherman et al

 

3. May 31, 2017: Funding Approved Instantly by the President’s Office

 

4. September 14, 2017: President approves “regular disbursement” of US$260,000 to Special Presidential Task Force

 

5. October 16, 2017: President approves “regular allotment” of US$260,000 to Special Presidential Task Force

 

6. October 23, 2017: Internal memo from the Ministry of Finance & Development Planning, processing the disbursement of US$260,000 to the SPTF

Authors

8 COMMENTS

  1. THESE DAMN ELLEN CROOKS AND “BABY SNAKES” BETTER ENSURE THAT THE GLOBAL WITNESS CASE SUSPECTS ARE PROSECUTED EFFECTIVELY WITH RELEVANT EVIDENCE PROVIDED FOR CONVICTIONS! THESE CROOKS CANNOT AND WILL NOT RIP THE LIBERIAN PUBLIC OFF CONTINUALLY!

  2. This administration of Ellen sirleaf can’t stop it’s incredulous behaviors when it comes to corruption.
    No one will think of using almost a million dollar to investigate million dollars case – pure non-sense

  3. One fails to see the relevance of this case, which consequent junkets to the UK & US some of us shrilly condemned at the time; well, unless, ironically, to underscore the UP government’s fiscal profligacy: Justification for voters to reject the same hold, same old for something new.

    Anyway, unnecessary costly probes aren’t nothing new even in advanced democracies. For example, according to the April 1, 1999 issue of the journal allpolitics.com, figures released by the US’s General Accounting Office (GAO) showed that the investigation of Special Counsel Ken Star into Bill Clinton’s Monica Lewinsky scandal and alleged White Water shenanigans cost US tax payers over USD $80 million dollars.

  4. Mr. Sylvester G. Moses, perhaps you are not in the arena, but according to my legal
    experience, the Global Witness trial of the officials, at least some, of the Government
    of Liberia, this case is not a common case. For instance, the Presidential Task Force
    has to dig out evidence not only from here but also from abroad. It cost money to do
    so. In fact, this is an international trial also. The implications, both legal and otherwise,
    are overwhelming.

    Is the trial of the Global Witness necessary? Absolutely! Those Government officials
    involved in this bribery are the ones who are supposed to help the Government to
    attract investors into the country. But used their respective offices to discourage investors.
    That is one of the reasons why Liberia unemployment rate stands at little over 85%
    under President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. This unemployment rate is a real threat to peace
    ansd stability. Thanks to Liberians of all walks of life for allowing calm and peace under
    the circumstances.

    • Then you agree that the expense is justified. And, by the way, I don’t have to be a lawyer to opine about the fairness of a politically – motivated case. That’s the reason for drawing parallel with Republican Party – sponsored Special Counsel Ken Starr’s investigations.

  5. Mr. Sylvester G. Moses, perhaps you are not in the legal arena, but according to my legal
    experience, the Global Witness trial of the officials, at least some, of the Government
    of Liberia, this case is not a common case. For instance, the Presidential Task Force
    has to dig out evidence not only from here but also from abroad. It cost money to do
    so. In fact, this is an international trial also. The implications, both legal and otherwise,
    are overwhelming.

    Is the trial of the Global Witness necessary? Absolutely! Those Government officials
    involved in this bribery are the ones who are supposed to help the Government to
    attract investors into the country. But used their respective offices to discourage investors.
    That is one of the reasons why Liberia unemployment rate stands at little over 85%
    under President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. This unemployment rate is a real threat to peace
    ansd stability. Thanks to Liberians of all walks of life for allowing calm and peace under
    the circumstances.

  6. Blah blah blah. All talk and no action will lead the country into yet another period of civil unrest with children sleeping in abandoned boats on the waterfront and man beating man over a scrap of food. What says the highest court? Where are those voices? Chief Justice…what do you have to say or will you stay quiet and just watch the mayhem continue? Where the Wild Things are… Liberia.

  7. With the case nowhere right now and the taxpayers spending $750,000.00 usd, it could cost us over ten million usd before final conclusion involving the supreme court, wow what a waste of cash when some Liberians in towns and villages still drinking mud water not to even talk about giving them electricity.

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