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Crime & PunishmentGeneralLiberia news

Families look to ECOWAS Court, US over missing men

By Lincoln G. Peters

Family members of the three missing men have threatened to drag the Liberian government to the regional court of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) for their relatives.

They have also threatened to complain to the Liberian to the United States Government for its alleged failure to present the report of the panel initiated by the Ministry of Justice here.

In October 2020, three young men, Robert Blamo, Jr., 29, Siafa Boimah, 33, and Blama allegedly went missing when they left Monrovia to undertake a contract in Bong Mines for St. Moses Funeral Parlor proprietor Mr. Moses Ahoussouhe.

Mr. Ahoussouhe was accused of hiring the three men on Saturday, 15 October 2020 to travel to Bong Mines to do technical work for him at his diamond creek when all three of them went missing.

The family petitioned the United States Embassy on Monday, 17 October 2022, a little over two years since their relatives went missing.

A spokesperson of the aggrieved family, Mr. Robert Blamo, Sr. told journalists outside the United States Embassy that they have written to the ECOWAS Court complaining about the Liberian government regarding its role in dispensing justice.

“We have written to the ECOWAS Court.  We are taking this case to ECOWAS,” said Mr. Blamo. 

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“We have written to ECOWAS about this and they have also written to the Government of Liberia about this case. We have submitted the relevant documents,” he explained.

He added that they have gotten the United States government involved in the matter. 

“We are in conversation with Mr. Allen White of the United States government, Department of Justice about this case. Currently, we are providing the evidence and other documents to him to be sent to America,’’ Mr. Blamo noted.

He alleged that the Ministry of Justice has refused to make available to them the investigation and recommendation from the Independent Panel established by the government to present the report to the aggrieved family since its release on 1 June 2022.

The Independent Investigation Panel was said to include the Liberia National Police (LNP), representatives of various security agencies, the Association of Female Lawyers of Liberia (AFELL), the Independent National Commission on Human Rights (INCHR), and the Inter-religious Council.

“We are disappointed in the government because they have refused to do the appropriate thing,” Blamo lamented. 

“The country has been handed down to a group of boys, that is why at the end today we don’t have a government and country,” he alleged. 

He claimed that Liberia has failed the aggrieved families, noting that it’s a shame and pity that for two years the government has allegedly not said anything, and justice has become a hide-and-seek game.

Another spokesman of the aggrieved family Elijah Wilson claimed that since the Ministry of Justice instituted the Independent Investigation panel to probe the incident, the families have not received the report.

“Instead of letting us know that we should go and get a copy of the report, Minister [Frank Musa] Dean was inviting the biological mothers and maternal siblings to provide specimens for DNA of the body …  to establish whether the body has any biological lineage to family members,’’ Wilson disclosed.

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The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).
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