Counsels for former National Port Authority (NPA) managing director Ms. Matilda Parker and her comptroller Mrs. Christina Kpabar-Paelay have queried state witness Deneah Martin Flomo how much money he encashed, citing variance in the US$737,950 in prosecution’s exhibits and US$837,950 charged by the indictment as opposed to Flomo’s alleged statement of receiving US$899,850.
But in response, witness Flomo said, “… I cannot say or tell this court the amount of money that I encashed,” having earlier said during the investigation at the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission, he saw the amount of US$800,000 plus.
Witness Flomo repeatedly claimed he did not read any contract between him and the NPA, though he confirms the name and signature on the contract pages are his. Flomo and the two ex-NPA officials were indicted after his alleged failure to implement wreck removal and security consultancy contracts worth more than US$800,000 allegedly awarded him by the NPA under Ms. Parker’s watch in violation of public procurement laws.
But he is being used as state witness against his one-time business partners, testifying in the economic sabotage, criminal conspiracy and theft of property case after being nolleprosequi.
After being on the run for some eight months, Mr. Flomo told cross-examiners that he allegedly reported himself to the LACC.
He accused Mrs. Paelay of advising him to change his GSM number and to apply for Visa to go to the United States for America while the LACC was pursuing him.
“I went to the Embassy and I was denied because she told me that the LACC had blocked my leaving the country. So therefore, they will prepare the laissez-passer in another name, not Deneah Martin Flomo, but in another name which I do not know”, he testified.
The witness further claimed a lady he only identified as Fatu, who was allegedly working in ex-comptroller Paelay’s office had informed him that she was going to get the laissez-passer ready, and that she and Ms. Parker would have made US$50,000 available.
“When the laissez-passer was ready, Fatu called me to get ready and leave for Freetown. And I told her I was not going anywhere, at which time she called the comptroller Mrs. Paelay and told me that I should do what I wanted to do.”
It was from this point that he claimed to have gone to his lawyer MomoluKannakai and explained the situation to him, who then advised that they go to the LACC.
The case continues today, Friday, 22 January.
By Winston W. Parley-Edited by Jonathan Browne