Thursday, June 10, 2010

Suspect in World Vision $1M Theft Case Battling Extradition from Liberia

Suspect in World Vision $1M Theft Case Battling Extradition from Liberia


Monrovia - The fate of a Liberian citizen Thomas Momo Parker, who allegedly committed a crime in the United States of America (USA) and fled to Liberia, is expected to be decided this week by the presiding magistrate Nelson B. Chineh of the Monrovia City Court at the Tempe of Justice.

Accused Parker was arrested and forwarded to the court based on a request from the American Embassy in Monrovia though the Ministry of Justice (MOJ).

Testifying on Wednesday as the prosecution’s first witness, Emmanuel B. Harvey, told the court while he was at his Ashmun Street offices at the Ministry of Justice, he received some documents from the US Embassy in Monrovia.

Atty. Harvey who is also Administrative Assistant to Liberia’s Solicitor-General Cllr. M. Wilkins Wright further testified that he cannot remembered the exact time and date of the documents, but added that the papers requested the Government of Liberia to turn over defendant Parker and others not named to be extradited to the USA and face criminal trial.

Witness Harvey said upon receiving the documents from the USA, state securities including the Liberian National Police, National Security Agency and the National Bureau of Investigation were instructed by MOJ to identify and arrest the alleged suspect Parker.

The state witness who did not explain to the court what crime the Liberian citizen committed in the USA, further told the court after vigorous search by the securities, Parker was arrested and forwarded to the court.

Parker, a former employee of World Vision was reportedly arrested in Monrovia recently. The judge at the Magisterial Court in Monrovia postponed ruling on the extradition request but he is expected to hand down his ruling this week. Judge Nelson Chineh of the Monrovia City Court will today decide whether a former World Vision Liberia employee Thomas Momo Parker will be extradited to the United States as requested by the US to face charges of fraud and Thief of Property.

Mr. Parker and several other former senior World Vision officials in Liberia and two other workers were charged last year for alleged fraud. They were accused of stealing and selling donated food in local markets and keeping the profits. They were also alleged to have used construction materials to build themselves multiple homes using labour provided by US-funded aid workers. Joe Bondo, one of the Liberians involve and also who was a manager on the project, has been in a Washington jail since his arrest on 20 May.

The US-based international Christian relief organization at the time said, it believes more than 90% of its aid to Liberia went missing in a massive fraud scam. World Vision’s Vice-President George Ward said the losses came to more than $1m and pledged to make “every effort” to avoid a repeat.

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Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah

Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah


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