Jurors at the Temple of Justice Civil Law Court yesterday unanimously declared Mamba Point Hotel guilty and asked for the hotel to pay US$827,125 in damages to employee Jenneh Dee for the spinal injury she sustained at the work place.
The jurors returned with the unanimous guilty verdict after hours of closed door deliberations yesterday.
Judge Boimah Kontoe now has up to five(5) days to determine whether or not he will reduce the US$827,125 to an amount commensurate with Doctor Robert Kpoto’s advice for Dee to seek medical treatment abroad.
Dee filed her lawsuit in September 2015 against her employee, the Mamba Point Hotel, for spinal injuries sustained as a result of the hotel’s negligence, based on which she requested compensation of US$825,000 to be paid for physical pain and US$2,125 for mental agony experienced by her as a direct result of the accident, totaling US$827,125.
When she testified earlier, Jenneh alleged that her employer sent her to Medlink Clinic, where Doctor Kpoto, a bone specialist, practices and he requested her to undergo medical tests because of the extent of her spinal injury based on her X-ray.
Dee also claimed that Kpoto recommended that she seek advanced treatment out of the country since her case could not be handled in Liberia. “To my great surprise, after the medical report was made available to my employer, they stopped paying my monthly salary, which I was using to treat myself.”
Imad Aoun, Mamba Point Hotel general manager, however, testified that he referred Jenneh to Dr, Kpoto and paid for the medical bills,but, he did not receive any report from the doctor or Jenneh.
Aoun also argued that he did not care to ask about the medical report from Dr. Kpoto.
According to Dee, she was serving customers, but had to use the bathroom in the upper part of the building. While there she fell on her back as a result of the wet floor, which was the result of water that continuously flowed from underneath the floor tiles. She said she injured her spine from the fall.
She accused her employer of asking her to sign a general release for her to get some money for her medical treatment, because they were using the money as her nine (9) months’ pay, from April to December 2015, which she had worked for.
Dee also explained that after the accident, she was rushed to the John F. Kennedy Memorial Center where the nurses advised her to do an X-ray to determine the extent of her injury.
At the hospital, she was put on medication by nurses there and since then she has been surviving on that medication. “As the result of my continuous pain, it is impossible to move my body or even walk,” Dee said.
She also claimed that she had informed her employer, by telephone, and her workmates about her worsening health condition. She alleged that after her employer realized that her condition had worsened, they requested her to remain at home until she was well again. “My monthly salary was paid to me without any form of medical assistance, which salary I used to treat myself,” she told the court.