- As they arrest three persons with $500,000 counterfeit banknotes
By G. Bennie Bravo Johnson
Three people were arrested by the Liberian National Police in relation to the seizure of 500,000 counterfeit Liberian dollars at the Bo Waterside checkpoint in Grand Cape Mount County.
At a press conference held at the LNP headquarters in Monrovia on January 9, 2023, police spokesman Moses Carter stated that on January 7, three individuals attempting to enter the country with fake money worth 500,000 Liberian dollars were stopped by joint security officers.
Sekou Kanneh, Mohammed Kamara (both Liberians), and Vaboyee Kamara (a Guinean national) have been arrested. Mr. Carter advised Liberians to exercise extreme caution with their cash transactions.
Cyrus Logan, 16, was arrested in connection with the death of Alpha Gray, a 31-year-old woman from the Du-Port Road Community, according to the LNP spokesman.
Carter also stated that the LNP has launched a comprehensive investigation into the death of Princess Hammer, a 15-year-old girl whose body was discovered in Mount Barclay with missing body parts.
In the last edition of Womenvoices, the paper reported that there are several controversies surrounding the sudden and secret demise of 15-year-old Saybah Harmon, who left her parents’ home to retrieve her rechargeable light but was not seen till her lifeless body was discovered in Peace Land Community, Mount Barclay.
The sudden demise of Sabah Harmon, the circumstances surrounding her death, and the investigation to uncover the truth are ones that it appears even the Liberia National Police have given up on, as they have asked the family to take ownership of the body.
Mrs. Watta Harmon, the mother of Saybah Harmon, has raised several claims and allegations, pointing towards the family of the charging center where her daughter went to free her rechargeable light and was found dead the next day.
As established by our investigation, though Mrs. Harmon has not clearly stated it, her assertions resound with the thought that the death of her daughter was masterminded by someone within the Peace Land community.
She alleged that, from the onset, while in search of her daughter, she was asked about her connection with Saybah by the owner of the house where the charging center is situated. “On my way to the other house after I didn’t see her at the charging center, I saw the house owner coming from behind the house with a bucket in his hand, so he asked whether Saybah was my daughter; I told him yes, and he just laughed and said it’s not easy, and that’s how he passed me,” she alleged.
According to her, the direction Mr. Mulbah came from when he asked about her connection with Saybah was the same end toward which her lifeless body was found early Monday, December 26, 2022.
Though Mrs. Harmon and Mr. Mulbah had never had any interaction about her daughter prior to the time she met him while searching for her, she didn’t feel suspicious about his concern because, as she said, she didn’t expect to hear a negative outcome with regards to her daughter’s whereabouts.
Simultaneously, she alleged that Prince Mulbah, the fellow who was at the charging center when Saybah got there, was seen all of the different times they went in search of their daughter in the community.
“While we were searching in the community, we passed through the same yard where the girl went for the light, but the same boy was sitting in front of the porch; it was some minutes to 11:00 p.m., then he asked again whether we saw the girl, and that’s how we said no.” “We left him outside until it was some minutes to 3:00 a.m.; that’s how we went to check; while we were passing in the same yard where the charging center is, we saw the same boy sitting where we left him, and I don’t know why he was out,” she said.
According to Mr. Moses Harmon and Mrs. Watta Harmon, about 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 25, 2022, Saybah Harmon went to pick up her light and never returned, even during the mid-night hours. They said they both grew skeptical and started to search the entire community until the next morning, when her body was discovered in the grass, just a few feet away from where she went for the chargeable light.
On the other hand, Esther Mulbah, the owner of the charging center, confirmed that she saw Saybah at the charging center during the evening hours of December 25, 2022, when she went to free her light, but they couldn’t find it at the moment, so she unhesitatingly left and didn’t return.
“What we usually do is, if he can’t find someone’s item, he can let me know, so when she came, they were about 3 at the booth; he served the other people, but he couldn’t find her light; he told her that he couldn’t see the light, so she left,” she explained.
Though Saybah’s mother confirmed that she was the one who charged the light earlier that morning, Esther Mulbah stated that Saybah was denied of freeing the light because she did not have proof that she was the one who charged it.
Moreover, Esther justified that they are not guilty of any of the allegations made against them by the Harmon family, adding that it was on said grounds that her husband, her brother, and another person who were arrested were all released because the police saw nothing relevant to prove them guilty of the crime.
Esther Mulbah, whose residence in Saybah was last seen before her sudden disappearance, stated that she and her family were told by police that they are not suspects in the case.
“When the police people came here, they made it clear to the community people that we are not suspects, but the only reason they were asking us was to know where she went after she left here,”, she noted.
Following the discovery of Saybah Harmon’s lifeless body, the family previously admitted that the police intervened and arrested about three people from Esther Mulbah’s home, but the following day, the various suspects were released.
Howbeit, the family is calling on the Justice Ministry, civil society actors, and all Liberians to join them in ensuring justice for their daughter.
“I want justice, because my daughter’s business can hurt me every time I think about it. I’m feeling pain because of what they did to my daughter, so I am asking for people to come in for me to get justice for my daughter,” Mrs. Watta Harmon lamented.
Mrs. Harmon’s call for justice is triggered by what she considers the police’s reluctance to address the case. “When we went to the station, the other man that came to ask started shouting at me. After we explained, the police said they couldn’t hold the owners of the charging center responsible because maybe the girl went somewhere else and there she was murdered, so they couldn’t hold the people responsible,” she narrated.
The victim’s mother thinks that personnel of the Liberia National Police who are in charge of the matter are not taking it seriously. “They just dashed it, and when we get to central, they can make fun of us by telling us how the body is spoiling and we should go for it.”
She further alleged that they were instructed by officers of the Liberia National Police to make funds in the sum of $USD20 available before freeing the body.
As the incident occurred in the neighborhood, Mr. Moses Harmon believes that his daughter was murdered by someone in their community, which he’s convinced will be known if the matter can be adequately investigated by the Liberia National Police (LNP).
Moreover, she said her quest for justice is also backed by the tragedies surrounding the matter, considering the kind of humble and respectful person she knew her daughter to be, how she went missing, and the sudden end of her life.
In addition, Mr. Moses Harmon, the father of Saybah Harmon, told our reporter that since the alleged suspects were released, they are not seeing efforts from the Liberia National Police, especially since they were told to go for the body.
He joined his wife in calling on civil society actors, human rights organizations, and all Liberians to join them in fighting to get justice for their late daughter, who was allegedly murdered by unknown individuals.
At the same time, the Chairman of Mount Barclay, Lawrence Twuah, condemned the incident and expressed regret about the circumstances surrounding it.
As things stand, the Mount Barclay Chairman believes that it is now time for residents to band together to devise strategies to delve deeper into the matter in order to identify those responsible and allow the law to prevail.
He frowned at the Liberia Nation Police for its decision to have the suspects released as well as its mandate to the family to have the girl’s body removed from the John F. Kennedy Medical Center for burial.