Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission Obsession With Leaks
The Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) Boss is Once Again at the center of another Leak Saga, this time, someone actually died
A LOT OF INNOCENT PEOPLE lost their lives during the long-running civil war because someone totting a gun wrongfully pointed them out for assassination.
IN MOST CASES, or instances, it had to do with an overly-ambitious someone high up in ranks among the rebels or even a relatively unknown just excited to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when an innocent bystander simply trying to survive was caught in the line of fire.
THIS WAS THE WAY of war in the barbaric nature that Liberian adopted. Today, recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission are yet to be implemented and as a result a lot of those who maimed, slaughter, looted and killed innocent people are walking around scot free, some even benefiting as members of government collecting paychecks and incentives for their service.
WE ARE REMINDED OF THIS because of what is sadly unfolding at the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC).
SINCE THE APPOINTMENT OF Cllr. James Verdier as Chairman, the commission has had a somewhat pathetic obsession with how information about its misdeeds is being leaked to the media.
IN THE PAST FEW YEARS, a number of employees have had their contracts terminated, while some have been dismissed amid allegations that they were either behind something being leaked to the press or simply out to ruin the commission by spilling the beans over what is unfolding there.
BY ITS OWN VISION STATEMENT, the LACC, serves as the lead governmental agency in addressing and preventing corruption. “However, it cannot succeed without strong and broad-based partnerships with every official and every citizen at the community, national, regional and international levels.”
ON THE CONTRARY, THE LACC has been far from utilizing everything within its powers to establish strong partnerships, especially with the media which from all indications should be the primary partner of the LACC in helping to prevent, address and reduce corruption in the public and private sectors and
to promote good governance, integrity and the rule of law.
IN MAY 2015, Cllr. Verdier was involved in a heated series of exchanges with the editor/publisher of FrontPageAfrica regarding a leaked report of the LACC which recommended the prosecution of former Managing Director of the National Port of Authority (NPA) Matilda Parker for her alleged involvement in US$800,000 ‘scandal’ at the port.
CLLR. VERDIER went as far as to suggest that someone within his organization had leaked the report to FrontPageAfrica and even spend US$10,000 of taxpayers’ money to investigate and question staffers over the leaked report.
THIS LEAD TO A NUMBER of dismissals within the LACC, including some employees who were miles away from the office of the auditors who prepared the report.
THE LACC BOSS EVEN went to the extent of denying that the report published by FrontPageAfrica was not the LACC report although he would later acknowledge that it was indeed the actual LACC document – even if it was not the right version.
TWO YEARS LATER, Cllr. Verdier is back in the saddle again. This time, according to the family of the late Morris Ware, a former Chief Investigator, the dismissal by the LACC and Cllr. Verdier, actually led to Mr. Ware’s death.
RITA JOHNSON-WARE, the wife of the deceased told FrontPageAfrica Monday that she was simply disappointed and devastated over the death of her husband.
MRS. JOHNSON-WARE explained that her husband came down with pressure after which he was taken to the E.L.W.A hospital where he died. “We have two kids together and three on his own. We got married in November 2016, this November supposed to make us one year.”
THE LATE MR. WARE had reportedly taken the LACC to court and the ministry of Labor over the wrongful termination. He never got to see his day in court. The thought of not being able to provide for your family in a nation facing enormous economic difficulties was apparently too much the father of five to bear.
WHAT WE do find disturbing is the pattern of obsessive tendencies by Cllr. Verdier and the LACC leading to dismissals and now a death from a heartbroken investigator.
WE DO WONDER what Cllr. Verdier and the LACC have to gain from all this? Leaks are an everyday phenomenon. In virtually every nation in the world, governments experience leaks. If they actually go around dismissing each and every employee every time something is leaked, perhaps there would not be any one left in the world to work.
CLLR. VERDIER AND THE LACC need to get over it and actually get a life. How many more people have to lose their jobs or die before this fatal and now deadly obsession, leaving drips of blood on the LACC, comes to an end.
THE BUCK, CLLR. Verdier, must stop here!!!