Just as two damning reports from investigation of the controversial L$16 billion saw the light of day and the first batch of culprits identified were remanded to prison, a senior staff of the Central Bank of Liberia from which all the culprits were drawn was reported dead. Both family members and independent investigators have been marveling over the timing and circumstances of the death, which some sources initially said was a result of a ‘hit-and-run’ incident. As public temperament becomes to fade over the mystery of incident, the Church of the fallen CBL senior staff, Bethel World Outreach Ministries International, is trumpeting demands for immediate investigation and convincing explanations from authorities. The Analyst reports.
On Sunday the 3rd March 2019, the shocking news of the sudden CBL senior staff Matthew Innis was reported. He was a very devout and dedicated member of the Bethel world outreach Ministries International, with active membership at Bethel Cathedral of Hope Tubman Boulevard, Congo Town, and Monrovia.
The news of Innis’ death came hours after some former and present officials of Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) were arrested over reports from investigations on the controversial missing billions were released by both the Presidential Investigative Team set up by President George Weah and an auditing firm, Kroll, hired by USAID.
It was said that around 2am on the March 3, Innis was found lying by his vehicle in the 72nd Community area where he was taken and rushed to hospital.
The news of the death, particularly with the implication of several CBL bigwigs, has since become prominent in public discussions, with many expressing shock amid varying theories about the incident.
His Church, Bethel World Outreach is also not satisfied. In a statement, the Church said: “Circumstances surrounding his death are mysterious, frightening, and mystifying. This has left more questions in the minds of thousands of members of the Bethel world outreach Ministries international, both at the local church and other churches around Liberia and other parts of the world.”
The Church said as per Article V, section 5.14 of its constitution and by-laws, “We believe in the sanctity of human life, which begins at conception and should be preserved and protected in accordance with the Hold scripture (jer.1:5; Ps. 139:13-16).”
The Church said in a statement: “We were told by the family that Brother Innis let his house on Saturday morning (2nd march 2019) for work at the Central Bank of Liberia. They did not hear from his the entire day, but were sadly informed early Sunday morning, by some community dwellers, that Brother Innis was hit by an unknown vehicle at about 2: AM on the SKD Boulevard. According to family sources, before they got to the scene, the body had been removed and driven to the ELWA hospital by the Liberia National Police. Family members followed them to the hospital, and upon arrival, they were informed that personnel of the ELWA hospital had examined Brother Innis and pronounced his dead on arrival (DOA).”
The Bethel Cathedral of Hope family, under the leadership of Bishop Dr. M Wolo Belleh, Diocesan Bishop, and with the approval of His Eminence Bishop Dr. Darlington G. Johnson, Presiding Bishop of the Bethel world outreach Ministries International, are calling on the Government of Liberia to investigate, without delay, this matter concerning the gruesome death of Brother Matthew Innis.
“We also call on the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) to ensure that the death of Brother Innis is fully and timely investigated,” the Church said. “Brother Innis was an employee of the CBL for over fifteen years; he rose through its ranks to the position of Deputy Director for supervision and Regulations.”
The Church says there are questions which still linger in our minds as Bethelites which we request answers from those concerned.
“Who informed the police of the accident, and at what time? Who were the police officer(s) who were first responders to the accident scene? How did the police get to the accident scene and why was Brother Matthews’ Car used to take him to the ELWA hospital, instead of an ambulance of some other emergency vehicle?
“Is there a hand over report or accident report at the local Depot in the 72nd area where the police came from that catalogued the incident? Why did the police not wait for member(s) of the family before removing Brother Innis’ body from the hospital to the funeral home? Are there any fractured(s) on the body? Was Brother Innis alive when the police got on the “accident” scene?
Has the Liberia National Police (LNP) made any arrest of the driver that allegedly “hit” him or did anyone identify the vehicle that “hit” him?”
The Church says it was informed that phone used by Brother Innis was returned to the family by the Liberia National Police and was positioned at factory mode-meaning, calls made and received by Brother Innis might have been deleted.
“We are therefore asking the Government of Liberia (GOL) to subpoena is his call records. From his service provider(s) covering Friday, 1st March 2019 to the time of death and to investigate all calls made and received by Bro. Innis.”
Bethel Cathedral of Hope family says it is demanding immediate answers to those troubling questions and more to lessen the emotional and psychological trauma that we are going through because of this strange death of our member and brother in lord.
“Our prayers are with his wife. Children and other members of the family and that God will continue to be their strength and peace as they go through this traumatizing period in the family existence,” said the Church. These are difficult and trying times for us, as a Church. We want to appreciate members of the Christian community and religious groupings who have stood with us and continue to do so during these dark days. We call on all members of Bethel in Liberia, those around the world and all members of the body of Christ to remain calm as we demand answers to our many questions.”