Monday, May 16, 2011

Liberia: TUBMAN AND THE EMBASSY SALE SAGA

Front Page Africa Editorial
Source: FrontPageAfricaonline



AMBASSADOR
WINSTON TUBMAN
AMBASSADOR WINSTON Tubman, a candidate for the presidency of the Republic of Liberia has been accused of acting in bad faith regarding the sale of the Liberian embassy in Paris France during the height of the civil war.

THE REPORT, yet-to-be-made was sanctioned by former Foreign Minister Olubanke King-Akerele who, in 2009 and was one of several transactions cited for investigation. The others being, the Liberian chanceries in London, Nairobi, Belgium, and a number of other foreign missions.

THE SALE in question took place shortly after the fall of Samuel Doe and the arrival of the Interim Government of National Unity headed by Dr. Amos Sawyer, whose government was set up in an attempt to restore peace in Liberia and usher in a democratically-elected government.


THE EMBASSY IN QUESTION is located at 8 Rue Jacques, Bingen Paris, 75017, France and according to the investigation, was sold by certain individuals in 1992. The facility was exclusively owned by the Government of Liberia and had been owned by the Government of Liberia since 1953.

ACCORDING TO THE findings, Tubman signed the document which paved the way for the sale of the embassy but falls short of stating whether the former UN Special Representative to Sudan benefited from financial transaction which followed the sale.

ACCORDING TO THE REPORT, the document upon which the Notary Public in France, Mr. Dominique Ader, relied upon to perfect the sale was signed by Counselor Winston Tubman. Said the report: “We further understand that other individuals involved in the transaction included the late Ambassador Aaron George, the Liberian Ambassador to France at the time; Trohoe Kparghai, former Advisor to Samuel Kanyon Doe; and Alain Carron, the then Liberian honorary consul in Lyon, France. None of the aforementioned individuals had the authority to dispose of the Liberian government assets above described.

THE REPORT goes on to suggest that Tubman, who signed the purported “transfer of title” did not have the requisite indicia of authority in March 1992 to transfer a good, clear and free title of any property belonging to the Government and people of Liberia. Therefore, according to the report, the purported transfer was illegal and null and void ab initio.

WHILE SOME ARE raising questions about the timing of the report’s release, we encourage Ambassador Tubman to go beyond the call of duty in responding point-by-point the allegations raised in the findings especially in reference to suggestions that even though Tubman claimed to have been offered the position of Special Envoy of Dr. Amos Sawyer in 1990, he was not empowered to dispose of assets of the Government of Liberia unilaterally. Usually, Government assets abroad, such as embassies and consulates are under the purview of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

AT A TIME when Liberia and Liberians were scattered all over the world, the findings calls into question, the former Ambassador’s judgment in getting himself involved in a sale of a facility that did not require urgency of sale at the time. Was Liberia in danger of losing a property it rightfully owned? Would it have lost its sovereignty of the embassy had not been sold?

WE FEEL that Ambassador Tubman, who has been very vocal against the ruling Unity Party owes it to voters and the Liberian people to set himself apart from issues he has spoken out against, especially those bordering corruption now clouding the ruling Unity Party.

THAT THE REPORT has concluded that Ambassador Tubman, notary public, Mr. Domique Ader, Ambassador Aaron George, Mr. Trohoe Kparghai, Mr. Alain Carron, and all others involved in the sale of property belonging to the Liberian people and Government, located at 8 Rue Jacques, Bingen 75017 France, acted in bad faith; That the findings have concluded that Tubman had no authority, power or ownership interest to transfer said real property means that something sinister was behind the motives for the sale.

FOR A CANDIDATE seeking the highest office in the land, Ambassador Tubman must make it a priority to ensure that he answers these charges fully and unconditionally.

WHILE WE take the Ambassador to task, we also encourage the government to make all of the various probes public so it does not seem that the unearthing now is political motivated in an attempt to discredit Ambassador Tubman’s candidacy.

WHAT WE ARE advocating for is for candidates seeking the highest office in Liberia to exercise transparency, accountability and a sense of openness involving anything linking them to corruption or activities aimed at denying Liberia and Liberians revenues or a chance for a better life.

WE ENCOURAGE not just Ambassador Tubman but all candidates to come clean over whatever skeletons laying in their closets. Liberia and Liberians have suffered too much and are continuing to suffer as a results of frailties committed by politicians and corrupt officials and former officials. Now is not the time for any more mistakes but a time for all to come clean so that Liberia can enjoy a better future and an even much better chance at a better sense of political and financial security.

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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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