The question that keeps lingering on the minds of sound Liberians and Friends of Liberia is whether Cllr. Benedict Sannoh has a game plan to make President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf appear as a bogeyman, just as she is about to exit from office few months from today.
Sannoh’s handling of affairs, especially in the case of the mysterious and highly suspicious death of the former LPRC managing director Harry Greaves has left many to question the true intentions of Liberia’s current Minister of Justice. When President Ellen Johnson took over a war-ravaged nation in 2006, least on her agenda would have been any attempt to replicate the Machiavellian mistakes of her immediate predecessors, Samuel Kanyon Doe and Charles Ghankay Taylor - two men who were widely accused of silencing their critics through elimination by gruesome deaths. Until Harry Greaves’ suspicious death, the Liberian public had never one day suspected that their Nobel laureate of a democratically elected president could resort to dastardly means of silencing opposition. Until Benedict Sannoh stepped in. Harry Greaves walked into RLJ Hotel on Friday January 29, 2016. No one knows why. But inside sources close to the Greaves’ family disclosed to Capitol Times at the time that Mr. Greaves and his wife were having marital problems, and that he had left his family home to lodge at a friend’s residence. He never made it to his friend’s place apparently. On January 31, 2016 Greaves’ mangled body was discovered behind the Foreign Ministry where President Sirleaf currently holds court. The Liberian media, sensationalism and all, played a key role in highlighting the Harry Greaves death as an uncommon “drowning”. As a matter of fact, Harry Greaves was not a commoner. Thus, his death claimed maximum attention and publicity. As the public, fueled by media reports and graphic photos of the dead Greaves, started to speculate on all sorts of theories, the Justice Minister suddenly announced that government was concerned about Mr. Greaves death and was bringing in a pathologist from Nigeria to ascertain the cause of death. Apparently, Cllr. Sannoh had not consulted his boss who was out of the country. Upon arrival, President Sirleaf squashed the idea of Sannoh calling for a Nigerian pathologist. She immediately called on the United States government or the United Kingdom to assist in the process of establishing the cause of Mr. Greaves’ death. Since then, a lot has happened. In the first place, the media questioned the credibility of the Nebraskan pathologist, which also had a boomerang effect on the outcome of the death-by-drowning findings. Without consulting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or giving that arm of government its due functions, Cllr. Sannoh again had the temerity to write a diplomatic note to the United States Embassy near Monrovia requesting forensic investigators to help in establishing whether or not a crime had been committed in the Greaves’ death. Lest we forget, it was the same Benedict Sannoh, upon whose orders a contingent of police stormed the residence of opposition politician Simeon Freeman who said he’d heard rumors that government had a hit list to eliminate 10 other opposition politicians. It was also the same Sannoh who assured the public of a second autopsy, but later said the autopsy was impracticable on an embalmed body. Even after the family brought in its own pathologist from the United States to observe the performance of a pathologist that Sannoh had requested from Ivory Coast, the bumbling Justice Minister failed to conduct due diligence as he said he would have done to bring closure to the Harry Greaves death. Lest we forget also, it was the same Sannoh who said victim Victoria Zayzay who died in a Brewerville prison hanged herself, contrary to independent autopsy report which indicated otherwise. After all is said and done, Cllr. Benedict Sannoh, in his handling of the Harry Greaves death, has done more harm to his boss, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, and by extension to the very government he serves. If Ellen means well for herself and this country, she might as well give Benedict Sannoh the boot while she still has time.