Matilda Parker Trial Uncertain Due to Death, Resignation of Key Witnesses

first_imgMatilda Parker is going back in the trial dock to exonerate herself.The possibility for the government to succeed in its legal battle against former National Port Authority (NPA) managing director, Matilda Parker remains uncertain due to the death and resignation of most of its key witnesses from the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC), who had earlier testified, but the matter was adjourned after prosecution raise issued of juror tampering.Defendant Parker and her former Comptroller, Christiana Pealay, were indicted by state prosecutors based upon the conclusion of an investigation conducted by investigators of the LACC for economic sabotage, theft of property, criminal conspiracy and facilitation for allegedly awarding a contract worth over US$800,000 to dredge the Greenville Port in Sinoe County to a bogus company.They went on trial in early 2016, but the case was adjourned after prosecutors alleged that someone had tampered with some of the jurors in the trial after a letter was reported to have been intercepted by one of the court officers assigned with the jurors at the time of sequestration.There were three key investigators of the LACC who were used by the prosecution as prime witnesses when the case was first heard in 2016 and unfortunately one of them, Appleton Artis, has died.Artis’ family members by then attributed that to his dismissal and subsequent refusal by the commission to pay him the just salary thereby leaving him in total frustration that resulted in his death.Another witness, Blamo Koffa, then chief investigator of the LACC was forced to resign his post because of administrative reasons, but many employees of the commission blamed Koffa’s resignation on the alleged failure of the commission to commensurate his performance with that of his salary and bad administrative practices.Currently, the whereabouts of Aaron Davis remains a mystery for the prosecution.But, with the broadest implications as to what the prosecution’s case will be like going forward,  the Criminal Court “C’ yesterday opened the case in respect to the mandate of the Supreme Court that asked them to resume jurisdiction of the mater.The Supreme Court’s action resulted when they affirmed the judgment of Associate Justice Jamesetta Wolokolie and subsequently ordered the disbandment of the jury, which set the stage for a new trial on charges that Parker allegedly robbed the government of US$837,950 since 2017.During yesterday’s hearing, the indictment was for the second time in a roll read to the defendants and they again pleaded not guilty of which shifted the burden of proof on the prosecution to prove their guilt.shortly afterward, the prosecution made a submission where they pleaded for the matter to be heard by a jury panel, but that request was resisted by the defense lawyer Arthur Johnson who asked for a bench trial, meaning that Judge Boima Kontoe, should now serve as both jury and judge.The defense’s resistance later received the backing of Kontoe.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Miheso, Makwatta included for Stars India trip

first_img0Shares0000Clifton Miheso.PHOTO/courtesyNAIROBI, Kenya, May 30- Zambian based duo of John Mark Makwatta and Clifton Miheso have been included in the final travelling party as Harambee Stars departed on Wednesday morning for India where they will take part in the Hero Intercontinental four-nations tournament.The two who turn out for Zambian league side Buildcon are part of five new faces who have joined in the squad after Gor Mahia players pulled out of the team due to club commitments. Other players who have been included in the trip include Tusker FC’s third choice keeper Bryne Omondi, Thika United skipper Dennis Odhiambo and Vihiga United stopper Bernard Ochieng.Ulinzi Stars forward Mark Makwatta (left) with the Harambee Stars team in Kampala. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu.A squad of 15 players left the country on Wednesday morning with six more set to join up with the rest on Thursday.Kenya will start their campaign against New Zealand on Saturday, before facing hosts India on Monday and conclude the round robin games against Chinese Taipei on Friday.The top two teams will face off in the final, slated for June 10 at the Mumbai Football Arena in India.Squad to IndiaGoalkeepersTimothy Odhiambo (Ulinzi Stars), Patrick Matasi (Posta Rangers), Byrne Omondi (Tusker)DefendersJockins Atudo (Posta Rangers), Musa Mohammed (Un-attached), Michael Kibwage (AFC Leopards), Bernard Ochieng (Vihiga United), Dennis Odhiambo (Thika United), Johnstone Omurwa (Mathare United), Bolton Omwenga (Kariobangi Sharks), Erick Ouma (KF Tirana)MidfieldersKenneth Muguna (KF Tirana), Vincent Wasambo (Kariobangi Sharks), Patillah Omotto (Kariobangi Sharks), Chrispin Oduor (Mathare United), Clifton Miheso (Buildcon FC), Duncan   Otieno (AFC Leopards)AttackersOvella Ochieng (Kariobangi Sharks), Timothy Otieno (Tusker FC), John Makwatta (Buildcon FC), Pistone Mutamba (Wazito FC).0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more