Dr. Cassell: “L$5M For Anyone Who Will Provide Credible Information Leading To the Arrest of Auditors’ Murderers”
The Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Dr. Cassell Foundation, Dr. Daniel E. Cassell, has instructed his Foundation to offer a cash reward of L$5 million (five million Liberian dollars) or its equivalent in United States dollars to anyone who can provide credible information that will lead to the successful arrest and prosecution of individuals involved in any of the recent deaths of the four Liberian auditors.
Occurring over eight days, from October 3—10, four auditors: Emmanuel Barten Nyeswua, Director General, Liberia Internal Audit Agency (IAA); Albert Peters, Assistant Commissioner, Internal Audit Division, Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA); Gifty Lama, Research Analyst, LRA; and George F. Fanbutu, Revenue Auditor, LRA, were all found mysteriously dead, with no conclusive investigation undertaken to ascertain the causes of their deaths.
Peters and Lama were found dead on Snapper Hill, Broad Street, on October 3, 2020; Fanbutu was involved in a car crash but with alleged wounds of a cutlass on his head on October 4, 2020; and Neyswua allegedly fell from the porch of his house on October 10, 2020.
What appears to be parallel in their deaths is that all of them were reportedly conducting audits of government’s accounts over allegations of misappropriation of funds.
Since then, the administration of President George M. Weah has not done enough to bring the perpetrators to justice. Even though the administration has called on its international partners to intervene, investigate and conduct autopsy on the remains of the victims, the general public still awaits the outcome of their intervention, but to no avail.
However, individuals who are eager to see the investigation come to conclusion continue to mount pressure on the government and its partners. The Institute of Internal Auditors, headed by Richard F. Chambers, with headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C., on October 16, 2020 officially wrote the Secretary of State of the United States government, Mike Pompeo, asking that they grant President Weah’s request to intervene in the investigation of the death of the auditors. Other national and international organizations and human rights groups have also been pushing for the deaths to be thoroughly investigated.
The latest and apparently the most attractive deal to get detailed information about those involved in the death of the auditors have been announced by Dr. Cassell: a cash reward of L$5 million or its equivalent in United States dollars. This step, according to observers, could just be the beginning of the end of the investigation, as Dr. Cassell has also assured the protection of the whistleblowers.
In an article, titled, “Reward for Arrest and Prosecution”, written by Dr. Cassell, he said, “My family and I are concerned about the growing wave of fear threatening to overwhelm our country as a result of the recent mysterious and, as yet, unexplained deaths of four Liberians, three of whom worked for the Liberian Revenue Authority (LRA), and the other for the Internal Audit Agency (IAA). I have reached out to some members of the bereaved families to express our deepest condolences for the difficult losses they have sustained.
“To me, the grieving widows, widower, children, other relatives, friends, and for many Liberians, at home and abroad, the lives and mysterious deaths of Albert, Gifty, George and Emmanuel matter. Our Liberian society risks being defined by these lives, and yet, the unexplainable deaths.
“Understandably, these families are hurting. For some, they have lost the person who headed, and in some cases held their families together. Many lives in these families will be long impacted by the loss they have traumatically sustained. My thoughts and prayers are with all of these families, and I appeal to all Liberians of faith to join in prayers for these deeply afflicted families.
“As the head of my family and a father, my heart is broken knowing that as these families grieve and mourn the shocking and tragic deaths of their loved ones they are still without the answers they need to help them heal, and hopefully bring the much-needed closure to the difficult experiences of their loss. I know that nothing we will do will dull the pains of their loss. However, it cannot also be said that we did not do all that we could, individually and collectively, to help these grieving families find the closures they need to heal.
“Finding reasonable closure is also good for our society. Therefore, it falls upon all of us to do all that we can so that our country remains a safe space for all to live, work and care for their loved ones.
“Indeed, no society can stop the commission of all crimes. However, no society can be truly free, and hope to be safe, where alleged crimes are not thoroughly investigated, alleged perpetrators apprehended, justice is dutifully served, and the sanctity of life is jealously protected and preserved. Therefore, as long as these deaths remain mysterious and unexplainable, the trauma of fear would envelop our society. No society can realistically thrive in freedom and justice when its people are overcome by fear.
“I have therefore instructed my foundation, the Dr. Daniel E. Cassell Foundation, to offer a cash reward of five million Liberian (L$5,000,000.00) dollars, or its equivalent in United States dollars, to anyone who can provide credible information that will lead to the successful arrest and prosecution of individuals involved in any of the recent deaths of the four Liberians. “May their souls rest in eternal peace.”