Seriously Investigate Mysterious Deaths to Help Restore Public Trust

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Providence Baptist Church Response to the Recent Spread of Extra-Judicial Killings in Liberia

The Senior Pastor of Providence Baptist Church, Dr. Samuel Reeves, Jr, wants the Government of Liberia to speedily investigate circumstances leading to the mysterious deaths of four Liberian financial professionals in the government’s employ, three of who were auditors.

The dead include Albert Peters, Assistant Commissioner for Interal Audit, LRA; Victoria Asmah ‘Gifty’ Lamah, Manager, Tax Payer Services Division, LRA; Emmanuel Barten Nyeswa, Director-General, Internal Audit Agency; and George Fahnboto, Auditor, LRA. They all died within eight days of each other under such a cloud of mystery that many in the public are inclined to believe that all four were murdered. Furthermore, admissions by the Liberia National Police (LNP) to errors on its part in the handling of evidence surrounding the deaths, has reinforced perceptions of distrust in the government’s ability to conduct a credible investigation.

Dr. Reeves said the urgent need for investigation would help put away the countless perceptions of mistrust, foul play and suspicion that have characterized these mysterious deaths.

The Baptist prelate recounted that it is important for the government to invest seriously in a scientific investigation that would bring the perpetrators to justice speedily. This, he said, will encourage investors to come to the country, especially since high-yielding investments can only flourish in an environment where peace, security and justice reign supreme.

According to Dr. Reeves, these unique deaths have the propensity to bring the country’s image to international disgrace and, as such, government must exert all efforts to bring the matter to rest by apprehending the guilty.

Although Dr. Reeves welcomes the Government’s decision to partner with the U.S. government to help facilitate this essential investigation, he said it is also important that government shows that it can rightly depend on and trust its own investigation process and Liberians trained in crime-fighting intelligence. Confidence in our security forces and police departments will be validated by the people.

He said it is now time for the National government to institute its own investigation, and not always depend on other nations for same. While he recognizes the world is interconnected and that fighting crime crosses borders, he believes that within our national borders we must equip our Human Resources with the tools, forensic training and practical investigative competence needed to protect and support a peacekeeping nation.

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