Cephus Wants Impartial Trial -Says Constant US Sanctions on officials Undermines Gains

MONROVIA: Former Solicitor General of Liberia Cllr. Sayma Syrenius Cephus who was among the few Liberians designated by the US government, has urged President Dr. George M. Weah to immediately commission a Panel of International Experts, to be chaired by ECOWAS and Co-chair by a Liberian to investigate the growing waves of sanctions slapped against not just  mere individuals in the Weah government but core officials of  the government by the United States Government

Cllr. Cephus suggested that such commission of investigators should be drawn from the Liberian National Bar (LNBA), the African Bar, the European Criminal Bar Association (ECBA), the International Criminal Court Criminal (ICC), and at least retired officials from OFAC from the US Department of Treasurer and an observer from the African Union (AU) to indicate impartiality and transparency of the process.

Making the suggestion in an “Open Letter to President Weah” on his Facebook page, Cllr. Cephus informed President Weah that “Your Excellency that Liberia’s current democratic gains which culminated into Your Excellency’s recent decision to graciously   concede defeat in a free, fair and competitive contest, are being grossly undermined by the current waves of economic sanctions being imposed by the US Treasury Department on a number of officials in Your Excellency’s government.”

He noted that “Your Excellency’s government is on the verge of leaving power with a horde of falsely decorated “corrupt officials”, something which I suspect will not only obviously overshadow Liberia’s current democratic credentials on the world stage but could later hunt and hurt you so badly that your future bid, (if will ever happen again), for the highest office in this country could become a laughing stock.”

The former Solicitor General furthered, “As I indicated from the onset, and which obviously led you to receive a counter advice from your Justice Minister Frank Musa Dean to “play low” and let the sanctioned officials including me “cry their own cry”, this thing is getting serious, and it is all happening around you, and yet, there is no action taken, which is why every sanctioned official looks like a “convicted criminal,” although without trial.”

Accordingly, he beseeched President Weah to immediately  commission a Panel of International Experts, chair by ECOWAS and Co-chair by a Liberian,  and note that the commission should be drawn  from  the Liberian National Bar(LNBA), the African Bar, the European Criminal Bar Association (ECBA), the International Criminal Court Criminal (ICC), and  at least retired officials from OFAC, and  an observer  from the  African Union(AU)  to investigate these sanctions against not just  mere individuals in the CDC government but core officials of  your government.

“Excellency, I am totally innocent of what I was accused of, but my mere denial or dismissal of these allegations, as in the case of other officials, is not sufficient to set me free or to set anyone free, until I can have “my day in court” which is a cardinal constitutional benchmark of due process under Liberian law,” Cllr . Cephus lamented.

He expressed the belief that “Your Excellency will not again sweep this suggestion under the carpet because I believe, and which is now true, that the proverbial “town trap” is not for “rat alone.

“How sad is it that so many “rats” have been  caught, and others are  apprehensive and jittery, and scurrying for cover because they do not know where the “chips may fall” next,  is a crude  lesson that we all must learn as we await our fate,” he exclaimed.

It can be recalled that Cllr Cephus and three others, including Senator-elect Nathaniel Fallow McGill, former Minister of State for Presidential Affairs; and Bill Tweahway  were designated on sanction for corruption by the United States Department of Treasurer which forced the three officials to have resigned from government.

In his letter of resignation, Cllr Cephus  informed His  “Excellency,  working with Frank Musa Dean and his cronies  was like living in hell— Frank Musa Dean ran and continues to run a “parallel government” opposed to anyone seen as your ardent supporter; he   shut his office  doors on me for two years, and boasted about this on OK FM; intermittently kept speech from me, and during these periods, he  held press conferences,  and issued countless inflammatory press releases in which he falsely accused me of   running a “parallel Ministry of Justice” after incessantly failing to convince  Your Excellency  to have me dismissed unceremoniously without any justifiable reason.

“ Despite these incendiary attacks on me in the Liberian media, especially  the FrontPage Africa newspaper sponsored by Frank Musa Dean and cronies for the past two years, Cephus said the litany of administrative provocations, ranging from denial of basic amenities, using certain prosecutors to undermine my authority,  to usurping my functions and spreading false information about my actions and activities as Solicitor-General,   I chose silence and patience as effective tools to work in this sort of unsavory environment that reduces the Ministry of Justice to Frank Musa Dean’s  “private law firm”   with the belief that with time and events there would have been a change of behavior and he would have ultimately realized that this was a public office but I was wrong”, Cllr. Cephus said.

Amongst other things, Cephus said he found himself, his life, and his future and that of his family draped in US Treasury Department sanctions lured by Dean’s ceaseless provocations, naming his achievements as Solicitor-General ranging from the formation of the Assets Investigation,   Restitution and Recovery Team (AIRRET) in 2019 which was led by Grant Thornton LLP, United Kingdom, Adesteh Limited UK, and Duane Morris LLP, New York.

He also named a civil action he filed with the Civil Law Court,  Temple of Justice, against  “The Albatross Limited” (TAL) on   September 15, 2020,   and strenuously prayed the  Court to adjudge  liable, and the Court subsequently did adjudge liable, “The Albatross Limited”  for  the  sum of 6.4m  British Pounds (US$8m) representing proceeds of financial crimes, ranging from  non-payments of  statutory annual registration fees, including but not limited to  corporate taxes and other royalties  due  the Liberia Maritime Authority(LMA) vis-à-vis the Government of Liberia,  which was  frozen by the National Crimes Agency(NCA) in Great Britain amongst others.

However, the SG indicated that his resignation today “closes a rather distressing and painful barrage of experiences that I have endured under Frank  Musa Dean while serving  as   Solicitor-General and Chief Prosecutor of the Republic, but I hold no ill-will, and absolutely no   grudge against him or his cabal for what has happened even though I am quite aware that he is undertaking a rather salacious and sustained campaign to through his cronies  to  have me ejected from other professional institutions under a controversial process with no precedence”.

“But, as I Christian, my battle is God’s and for this reason I am impelled to take solace in a stanza in which our national anthem says “…With God above, our rights to prove, we’ll prevail over all.”  I can assure Your Excellency that I shall prevail because I am totally innocent as these allegations are totally groundless,” he said

He noted that he will not wear a crestfallen face because God Almighty is on his side. “Therefore, as I endure the shame and wrong public designation as a “corrupt” official instigated by Frank Musa Dean and coterie   in the eyes of my own people who are helpless to provide any assistance, others celebrating and calling for my arbitrary arrest, detention and public execution without due process, let firmness and courage be our credo, because this too, except there is no God, will surely come to past and Frank Musa Dean and cronies will fail”, he concluded.

2 Comments
  1. Jake Doe says

    Cllr Cephas, by virtue of your patriotism, wealth of experience in government and your domestic and pubic international status as one of the most astute litigators and legal luminaries on the continent of Africa, President Weah should have taken THE REALISM DISPOSITION by appointing you as Justice Minister instead of appointing that incompetent Frank Musa Dean who is a stooge of Ellen, and who has absolutely no sense of patriotism.

    It was the same Musa Dean who financed the disinformation and lies against Cllr. Gibson. A second error was not appointing you as Chairman of the National Elections Commission, but instead appointing someone whose appointment not matter what was bound to deluge xenophobia at especially the Capitol.

    But of course, as you have rightly fired with power as letters of fire written in the skies, THEY ARE DOOMED TO FAILURE!!!

    FOR AS ISRAEL IS TO THE WORLD, SO IS THE CDC TO LIBERIA. POWERFUL EMPIRES IN ANTIQUITY, THE MIDDLE AGE, AND MODERN TIMES TRIED TO UNDO ISRAEL! BUT ISRAEL LIVES! AND THOSE EMPIRES HAVE DIED FOREVER! BUT ISRAEL IS A GIANT ON THE WORLD STAGE!

    SO TOO, THESE BUYERS AND SELLERS OF SANCTIONS RECKLESSLY BELIEVING THEY CAN UNDO THE CDC, ARE DOOMED TO SUFFER THE SAME FATE AS THE EMPIRES OF ROME, HITLER, AND BABYLON!!! AND THE CDC REMAINS THE PRESENT AND THE FUTURE OF LIBERIA!!!

    Exodus 14:13-14 New King James Version (NKJV)
    And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. The LORD will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.”

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