The Ministry of Justice in Monrovia has broken silence on the death probe of the late whistle blower, Cllr. Michael Allison, disclosing here that a second autopsy is pending after which, findings will be made public.
The late Cllr. Allison was reportedly found dead on a beach in a Monrovia suburb of Sinkor in February, raising public suspicion that he may have been murdered.
He was former consultant to the House of Representatives on the nationwide oil and gas consultations, who reportedly blew the whistle on the US$25,000 saga, involving House Speaker Alex Tyler and Representative Adolph Lawrence, which has resulted to probe by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission or LACC.
Liberia’s Justice Minister, Cllr. Benedict Sannoh, told a daily press briefing Thursday at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism on Capitol Hill that due to mounting public concerns, Government is embarking on another autopsy to establish the cause of death.
The comment followed a NewDawn’s report Thursday, 5 March that the police and the Justice Ministry were silent on outcome of an initial autopsy conducted on the remains of the late Cllr. Allison.
The Liberia National Police last month invited a pathologist from neighboring Sierra Leone to conduct an autopsy on the deceased, but since the autopsy was completed, findings have not been released to the public amidst huge anxiety, particularly among Monrovia residents.
A press statement issued on February 16, 2015 by the Liberia National Police said the late Cllr. Michael Allison was discovered lying unconscious on the beach on Thursday, February 12, 2015.
According to the police, a brief case history of the incident revealed that during the evening hours of February 12 at about 1800hrs, the late Allison and his female friend (name withheld) were walking along the beach when he allegedly told her that he was feeling warm and wanted to waste some sea water on his body, adding, “it is further alleged that he then took off his clothes and walked into the sea, at which time he allegedly got drowned.”
The Justice Minister however said Government is concerned about the death of Cllr. Allison, something which he said has prompted the decision to invite other foreign experts to conduct an autopsy on the body.
According to Minister Sannoh, result of the first autopsy conducted by the pathologist from neighboring Sierra Leone is being withheld, pending the arrival of another pathologist this time around, from the United States, to carry out a second pathologist after which, findings would be made public.
This paper received unconfirmed reports Wednesday that the United States Government has taken serious interest in the death probe, and that undercover agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation or FBI are already in the country to help with the investigation.
The US Ambassador to Liberia, Deborah Malac, denied having knowledge of such reports, but said the Embassy is equally awaiting outcome of ongoing investigation on the death of the late Cllr. Michael Allison.
“We are waiting to hear the result just like you’’, Amb. Malac told reporters Thursday at the U.S. Embassy near Monrovia.
She called on Liberians to exercise patience, noting that it takes time to carry on investigation in Liberia because the judicial system is very weak.
At the same time, the U.S. Envoy said Liberia is close to getting to zero case in the Ebola fight, and America will continue to remain committed to Liberia in restoring the country’s health system.
She also spoke of the need to support girls’ education here by making sure girls are back in school and remain school.
By Lewis Teh & Bridgett Milton