Clarification Re-Report of The Meeting Of Sr. Liberian Woman With Minister Of Justice Late 2021 In FrontPageAfrica Article of May 10, 2022￼
Clarification of report on meeting with Minister of Justice late last year by women elders on series of mysterious ritual killings of women and young girls as well as other killings or murders.
In the 10 May 2022 edition of FrontPageAfrica online, it was reported that. I, with several high-profile women elders, visited the Minister of Justice Hon. Frank Musah Dean to express our disappointment with the report of killings and ritual murders of women & young girls and urged Government, through him, to tackle the continued extra judicial killings. However, the report continued, “she said”, (referring to me) the Attorney General downplayed their request and told them that there were no mysterious or extra judicial killings as was being reported; rather they were mere propaganda”.
While appreciating the extensive media coverage of the Angie Brooks International Centre’s (ABIC) consultations last week, this comes to provide a fuller and more comprehensive rendition of the meeting mentioned of senior women with the Minister of Justice on the above-mentioned situation in the country as at late 2021, and the Minister’s response. As we had earlier been well received some time back when we called on the Minister twice, on the two women senatorial cases (Botoe Kanneh and Edith Gongoloe), so did he similarly receive us then.
In that regard, I wish to clarify that the Minister did not downplay our request as such nor intimated that the reports were mere propaganda. Rather he invited some of his senior officers to join the meeting. They pointed out that amongst their investigations were instances where they had invited complainants in certain cases to come and provide more information on allegations but the said complainants had not responded or come in; hence one was left with questions of validity or otherwise of some of the allegations. This notwithstanding, the Minister himself assured us that they would actively pursue the cases, notwithstanding capacity challenges that they were experiencing.
Indeed, we indicated then that with elections upcoming we had concerns about prospects of more such mysterious killings and deaths. Thus, we would like to see some attention to the matters urgently and requested some concrete actions/measures thereto. This was contained in our letter of 24 September 2021 delivered to him at the time.
As it is now some eight months later and killings have continued, we plan to call on the Minister again as was indicated to his representative, the Ministry’s Coordinator of Gender Security National Task Force, Ms. Maude M. Somah, at the Angie Brooks International Center (ABIC) consultations last week. She said furthermore, that her boss was very passionate about the work of ABIC and stands ready to ensure that the elections are peaceful across the country, which we highly appreciated.
Signed: OluBanke King –Akerele
Chair of Board,
Angie Brooks International Center for
Women’s Empowerment, Leadership
Development, International Peace & Security &
Former Minister of Foreign Affairs