News / Africa

Liberia’s Defense Minister Sues Over Assassination Plot Accusations

Liberian defense minister Brownie SamukaiLiberian defense minister Brownie Samukai
x
Liberian defense minister Brownie Samukai
Liberian defense minister Brownie Samukai
James Butty
Liberia’s Defense Minister, Brownie Samukai has reportedly filed a $500,000 libel and slander lawsuit against the youth league chairman of the main opposition party Congress for Democratic Change.

Earlier this month, Jefferson Koijee called a news conference and accused Mr. Samukai of planning to assassinate President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as she returned to Liberia on October 9th from attending the 68th UN General Assembly.

When the police summoned Mr. Koijee to substantiate his accusations, he was arrested on the orders of the civil law court based on Mr. Samukai’s complaint.

Sayma Syrenius Cephus, the lawyer representing Mr. Koijee said the defense minister’s lawsuit is meant to prevent his client from cooperating with the police.

“We believe that the lawsuit was premature and more or less believe that it was meant to circumvent the cooperation that Mr. Koijee had promised to give to the police in respect to the plot to assassinate the president. We thought Samukai should have waited for a police clearance of no evidence to the assassination before filing a lawsuit,” he said.

Cephus describes the defense minister’s lawsuit as a serious political miscalculation.

“He had thought that Koijee would not have the temerity to stand and produce evidence, and on that basis he first took it for a bluff. But when he realized that Koijee was now willing to cooperate with the police, he became apprehensive. That’s when he decided to rush the court and decided to use the court to aid and abet his attempt to evade a possible police investigation,” Cephus said.

Some have raised the concern that if Koijee, a youth leader of a political party, had any such serious information about a plot to assassinate the president he should have first taken it to the appropriate national security agencies.

Cephus said his client fully understands the magnitude of the allegations he has made against the Defense Minister. But he said Mr. Koijee was being patriotic.

“The revelation provided the basis for deterrence, and had he [Koijee] proceeded to the national security agency or the police to give the necessary information given the bureaucratic nature of our system, we would have found it absolutely difficult to get the information out to avert what was viewed as a plot to destabilize Liberia. So I think it was important for him to have made the disclosure and it was also important for the police to have invited him to see whether he had compelling evidence to produce,” Cephus said.

Cephus said even though his client had offered to cooperate with the police, he has advised to give deference to the court “since Mr. Samukai is trying to transform a treasonable charge into a civil action and the police seem quite adamant to proceed”.

He said when the matter is called at the court, his client will be able to give instances and compelling evidence in support of his accusations against the defense minister.

Cephus describes his client as a young Liberian patriot who subscribes to the tenets of democracy and the rule of law.
Butty interview with Syrenius Cephus
Butty interview with Syrenius Cephusi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Disappointing Report on China's Economy Shakes Markets

In London and New York shares lost 3 percent, while Paris and Germany dropped around 2.4 percent More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: FRANCIS E. LANSANA from: MONROVIA
November 13, 2013 1:08 PM
People of Liberia, let us be conscious of what we say about each other despite the political,social,economic or personal difference we may have against each other. Lets make Liberia a priority, mind you, if you go through the history of this country, assassinating president have always been common.
Upon this, please let the judiciary investigate this pronouncement without prejudice so that the law will take it due course on whoever is guilty.
GOD BLESS LIBERIA , GOD BLESS THE WORLD

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs