Sources in Monrovia say Liberian
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will issue an executive order sometime this
week to freeze the assets of former President Charles Taylor, his immediate family
The U.N. Security
Council imposed the assets freeze and a travel ban in 2004 because then President
Taylor and his associates were interfering with the efforts to bring peace to
Liberia. Taylor is currently on trial in The Hague for war crimes and crimes
In a unanimous
resolution over the weekend, the Security Council called on the Sirleaf government
to continue to make all efforts to enforce the assets freeze.
Among those whose assets would be frozen is
Senator Jewel Howard Taylor, former wife of Ex-President Charles Taylor. She
told VOA she will sue the Liberian government if
President Sirleaf goes ahead to issue an Executive Order.
is a rumor that started in 2006 when she became president. There were
indications then that they might be considering an executive order to freeze
the assets of persons on the assets freeze list. And this was vehemently
opposed by civil society, and I think some members on the assets freeze list
had taken the government to court at that time. And it was stated through the
court process that no one can arbitrarily freeze peoples’ accounts without due
process. I don’t think this is going to work because if something like that
happens, we’ll definitely take the government to court because it is against
our constitutional requirement,” she said.
hoped President Sirleaf would not go against her own promise to uphold the rule
of law in Liberia.
former first lady said President Sirleaf should go through the national
legislature to create a new law that would enable her to implement any assets
the laws are enforced or you create a new law to give everyone their day in
court. And I think Jewel Howard Taylor as an individual has been charged with
ongoing ties with Charles Taylor. Let me say in this public manner, because I
know others will be listening, that I do have two children that belong to
Charles Taylor. Those children have to have access to their father; he has to
speak to them, and I am not going to cut them from their father because I’m on
the assets freeze list. If the government intends to freeze assets that I might
or might not have it will have to go through a due process out of which I will
be declared innocent. Anything outside this would be unconstitutional, and we
will take them to court,” Taylor said.
said whatever executive powers the president of Liberia might have should not
contravene the constitution.
said she is legally divorced from former President Taylor and does not
understand why her name is still on the U.N. travel ban list.
the former Liberian first lady, others on the U.N. travel ban and assets freeze
list include former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Edwin Snowe,
former chairman of Taylor’s National Patriotic Party, Chief Cyril Allen, and
former Commissioner of Maritime Affairs of Liberia Benoni Urey.
First Lady Taylor also played down reports of a movement to impeach her as
senior senator from Bong County.
been hearing on the radio and reading in the newspapers that a few people from
the county have set out to start a process of impeachment. But I would like to
say that our laws do not provide for the impeachment of any senator or any
representative for that matter. A sitting senator can be removed for proven
cause as for the court of conduct or if she or he does something against the
Liberian Senate. And that is not the case here, Taylor said.
said the efforts to impeach her are politically motivated because she had
recently been talking about corruption issues in Bong County.
you want to say that Jewel Howard Taylor can be removed from her seat only
because she speaks about corruption in the county and the county development
funds, then it’s a sad day. But I don’t think this is something that has any
bearing on the work that I continue to do for the people of the county. So I’d
like to say it is purely politically motivate. I’m a prominent member of the
Liberian Senate, I’m a hardworking representative of the people of Bong County,
and I think I continue to enjoy their confidence,” Taylor said.