T-Max Jlateh, MICAT Meet over Alleged Death Threats

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Radio talk show host, T-Max Jlateh, alleged that he has received death threats to him and his family.

The Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT) says it has been meeting with radio talk-show host, Mr. T-Max Jlateh and the Press Union of Liberia (PUL), following allegations made by Mr. Jlateh of “threats to his life”. The meeting also involved representatives of the Inter-Religious Council, the National Civil Society Council and some senior Journalists.

According to a MICAT release, Jlateh was accompanied to the gathering by his lawyers and provided his account of the “threats” while reiterating his earlier complaint filed with the PUL, in which he alleged being alerted to pending plots against him and his family and, in some instances, being pursued by unmarked vehicles.

The radio talk-show host also said that he harbors no personal problem with the Liberian Leader President George M. Weah, emphasizing that he has not personally received any threats from President Weah.

The PUL President, Charles Coffey, also informed the Information Ministry of incidents of threats against some journalists and asked that the Ministry intervenes to guarantee the safety of all Journalists and Media workers throughout the country

In response to these matters, Information Minister Ledgerhood J. Rennie reassured Mr. Jlateh and the PUL that the government’s commitment to creating an enabling environment for the respect of the dignity of the human person, freedom of expression, and a high level of political and social tolerance, irrespective of views expressed and actions taken, remain cardinal.

“This government is not in the business of taking people’s lives, neither interested in violating the fundamental rights of any of its citizens”, Minister Rennie reassured.

The Information Minister assured Mr. Jlateh that his concerns about “threats to his life” will be forwarded to the Ministry of Justice for further action.

Minister Rennie said as a journalist himself, he understands the plight of his media colleagues and will work towards improving the media landscape, but he also used the occasion to frown on incendiary language and reportage by some media outlets — saying the media and all citizens have a co-responsibility to ensure the consolidation of Liberia’s peace and democracy.

The Information Minister said he will work to ensure regular dialogue with the PUL and Civil Society Organizations as a means of addressing differences between and amongst journalists and civil actors.

2 COMMENTS

  1. [“This government is not in the business of taking people’s lives, neither interested in violating the fundamental rights of any of its citizens”, Minister Rennie reassured.]

    Mr. Minister, if the government is not in the business of taking people’s lives or interested in violating the fundamental rights of any of its citizens,
    – Why did you chase Costa out of Liberia for using his fundamental right to protest and freedom of speech to hold his government accountable?
    – Why do you continue your witch hunt and persistent harassment on another elected official in the person of Senator Kolubah?
    – Why will 4 auditors on active duty to guarantee sanity in public finance all die in the space of 8 days because they have all been working on financial malpractices by your government?
    – Why will the Daily Observer be traced by vehicles without plate, its workers being called up and threatened for doing a professional job?
    – Why will other talk host journalists, like Mr. Jlateh, be continuously complaining of threats to their lives as well as their families?
    – Etc.

    CDC, stop bereaving households! It is painful to lose a loved one in such brutal way. Sonner or later, there will be accountability. You have the choice to start doing the right thing now and beg the Liberia people to forgive you.
    Wasn’t it this minister who went on BBC to say those 4 people killed were not auditors?
    “To persist in doing wrong extenuates not the wrong, but makes it much more heavy,” a quote from Shakespeare to contemplate.

  2. Mr. Conservative,
    Costa chased himself out of the country because of the confusion he had caused. The government went after him not because the government wanted him killed.

    Mini Background:
    Initially, Costa and his accomplices requested permission from the government of George Weah in order to stage a protest march. The government of George Weah agreed and therefore gave the authorization for the protest march to be held. However, before giving the permission for the protest march to be held, a set of rules were laid down to be adhered to. For instance, the place and time of the protest march was discussed and agreed to by the protest dis-organizers and the GOL.

    What happened during the protest march?
    Sadly, a lot of funny things happened. Example, although the dis-organizers were granted the permission to march in good faith, the rank and file were sent out to march, somehow, the top brass went incognito.

    Secondly, instead of seeking the real interest of the “rank and file” who were used as body shields, the dis-organizers cared not to provide water, neither were the rank and file told not to bring mattresses, stoves and cooking utensils on the campus of the Capitol.

    Finally, when it was time to call the march off, the protest marchers became belligerent and provocative. However, the GOL had to do something! So, the GOL responded to the protesters’ belligerence and provocation. In any case, the provocative attitude of the marchers was pre-planned because the dis-organizers used that in order to score political points to their benefit. The strategy boomeranged. The dis-organizers were embarrassed. Part of that humiliation and embarrassment drove Costa out of town!

    Who was liable?
    Certainly not the rank and file! Certainly, not the GOL. For sure, the protest dis-organizers did not show respect for themselves as well as for the citizens of Liberia. What is even more shameful is the fact that the dis-organizers planned their march to be held in Monrovia, the nation’s capitol but no where else in the republic of Liberia! But why not a nationwide protest? Because the dis-organizers are unwanted in the counties!

    The deaths of the four recent patriotic Liberians is very, very sad. There deaths should not be politicized in anyway. The government of Weah will follow through with a promised in-depth investigation. Let’s hope that with the participation of the US government in the said investigation, the actual truth will be arrived at.

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