A Liberian broadcast journalist Attorney Mamadee S. Diakite has written House Speaker Alex J. Tyler, requesting a probe into a barrage of allegations levied against him by Montserrado County Electoral District #11 Representative, Gabriel Nyekan.
In a letter dated September 22, journalist Diakite complains that Representative Nyekan publicly accused him of being a jihadist and ex-LURD fighter; a convict of an alleged 40ft container theft and a private journalist on government monthly payroll of US$5,000, among others.
Diakite, Deputy Director General at the Renaissance Communication Incorporated, or RCI, and lead presenter of the “Truth Breakfast Show” said Rep. Nyekan made the claims when he addressed a news conference on Thursday, September 18 at the Capitol Building, claiming that his (Diakite’s) name is on the Ministry of State payroll.
At the press briefing, the complainant said Rep. Nyekan claimed that there are court records to establish that he (Diakite) stole and was convicted of stealing a 40ft container from the Freeport of Monrovia while serving there as Assistant Port Operations Manager for Container Operations.
“Mr. Speaker, while I hold that all the allegations are false and baseless, I respectfully seek your intervention as Speaker of the House of Representatives to initiate a process that would convince Rep. Nyenkan to make public all the pieces of evidence he claims to be in his possession in relation to the allegations he spread in the public,” Diakite wrote.
He complained that the extent of the injury Rep. Nyekan has caused his name and person is strengthened by the lawmaker’s political stature, and that his utterance is a callous abuse of legislative respectability and a disservice to the people whose mandate he holds as a legislator. Mr. Dakota said, referring to him as a “jihadist” is very sad, arguing that Jihad is associated with Islam with a negative connotation because of its variant definitions and interpretations.
He said claims of monthly pay off USD five thousand borders on corruption and misuse of state money, and must therefore claim the attention of the entire Legislature, demanding that the Legislature institutes a probe to establish the veracity of the claim.
“On the point of being an ex-LURD fighter, who killed people during the war, Rep. Nyekan is making up stories and swimming in a pool of fallacy with the object of denting my character and also endangering my life,” said journalist Diakite.
According to him, he has never been a member of the ex-rebel group LURD, fought any war or had links to any warring faction. Instead, Mr. Diakite narrated that since he returned to Liberia in 1996, he has been here in Monrovia seeking education, doing business and practicing as a journalist. Concluding, he told the House Speaker that Rep. Nyekan’s assertions are troubling and pure illustration of insensitivity.
He said Nyekan’s reference to his tribe during the press conference is in fact a ground for concern, stressing that “I didn’t choose to be a Mandingo and I am proud to be a Mandingo man.”
He suggested that if “we must attain national reconciliation, which is a strong ingredient to peace, people similarly [situated] as Rep. Nyenkan must avoid making comments with tribal and religious reflections.”