— Withdraws Oliver Dillon’s appointment
Transport Minister Samuel Wlue has overturned the administrative decision making Oliver P. Dillon as Director for Port and Borders Entry after being threatened by the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) Chairman, Mulbah K. Morlu, Jr.
Chairman Morlu on Friday, March 19, 2021, at a press conference demanded that Minister Wlue should rescind the appointment of Oliver Dillon, brother of Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darius Dillon as Director for Ports and Border Entry at the Ministry of Transport following his reinstatement.
In a letter dated March 22, 2021, Mr. Wlue said: “Pursuant to your letter of reassignment as Director for Port and Border Entry, Ministry of Transport, Dated March 11, 2021, I herein withdraw your appointment to the position with immediate effect.”
Mr. Wlue added: “the dismissal communication supersedes other previous communications.”
Mulbah Morlu, whose threatening statement is facilitating the action against Oliver Dillon, said earlier that opposition members should not be given positions in the CDC-led government while qualified partisans are left to wander in street corners in search for jobs.
In response, Oliver Dillon acknowledged receipt of the Minister’s communication withdrawing his appointment.
“Before this letter was issued, I did a communication on Friday asking the Minister to withdraw my appointment and find somewhere else where I can perform well. Upon arrival at work on, Monday March 22, 2021, I received a letter withdrawing my appointment made on March 11, 2021,” Mr. Dillon said.
Mr. Dillon said he believes that the Minister’s communication is predicated upon his letter sent requesting the rescinding of his appointment as Director of Port and Border Entry, but could not confirm if the Minister’s decision was based on pressure from the CDC chairman.
“Because of the too many threats I continued to receive, I will have to accept the withdrawal of my appointment,” said Dillon.
Mr. Dillon said prior to his encounter with a criminal leading to his trial for alleged murder in 2019, he served as coordinator for decentralization at the Ministry of Transport which is currently occupied by another person. He was acquitted of all charges in January 2021.
“When I came back, someone was already in my place and I don’t think it was fine to take someone from his or her job to put me there. The Minister then decided to put me somewhere nobody has been. I am the first person to serve as coordinator for decentralization since the position was created at the Ministry,” Mr. Dillon said.
Mr. Dillon, who was promoted as Coordinator for Decentralization in 2015 said he made the decentralization arm of the ministry to gain the attention and confidence of the public.
“From 1987 to 2016, all vehicle owners had to come to Monrovia to do their registration. For few places, but today, through my ascendency we have opened five offices in five counties, including Grand Bassa, Nimba, Bong, Grand Gedeh and Margibi,” Mr. Dillon said.
“It was under my watch that Liberia had the first decentralization inspection as all government inspections have been in Monrovia, and we know what was raised for government,” Dillon recalled.
“Prior to the unfortunate situation, I discussed with the Minister on the need to have an office at the Freeport to ease the tension on inspections where too many cars come through the port and are not registered. We decided to ensure that the cars are registered before leaving the port, and obviously more people will not be thinking about registering the car again, which made sense to the Minister,” he added.
According to him, it was on the basis of his achievements that led Minister Wlue to appoint him as Director for Port and Border Entry, a position just created with no prior occupant.
After nearly two years of being trapped in a murder allegation, the 13th Judicial Circuit Court in Margibi County on January 14 acquitted Mr. Dillon of all charges, having been on trial for the alleged murder of one Emmanuel Kofi who attempted to rob him (Mr. Dillon) one night in the Barnesville Community in April 2019.
Mr. Dillon was investigated, charged, and forwarded to court by authorities of the Liberia National Police for onward prosecution and subsequently indicted in November 2019 by the Grand Jury of Montserrado County for the crime of murder.
The matter should have been heard in Montserrado as per the law of territorial jurisdiction since that was where the incident occurred, but it was transferred to Margibi following a motion for a change of venue filed by Government lawyers on grounds that the deceased could not have had fair justice if the case were held in Monrovia.