Assistant Mines Minister Hands Down Verdict

By Mark N.

MONROVIA-The Assistant Minister of Mines at the Ministry of Mines and Energy, Emmanuel T. T. Swen has handed down a verdict in a disputed 53.27 carat of diamond case.

In a press conference held recently, Swen provided lengthy explanations justifying the reasons behind his decision to rule in favor of the person he considered as the legitimate owner of the disputed diamond.

Additionally, the Assistant Minister noted that he has always ethically and impartially investigated cases with both parties leaving being satisfied with his decisions.

One of the cases that had too many claims and counterclaims was the Gbarpolu County Smith’s Town Diamond Case.

In late April of 2023, a man only identified as Junior found the diamond that weights 53.27 carats.

Since its discovery, there have been controversies over its ownership.

Minister Swen stressed that he has commenced the investigation with both parties’ witnesses justifying the legitimate owners of the diamond.

Party (A), he said was a male-only identified as  Junior,  who the investigation established originally found the diamond, while party (B) represented by Ma Fatu.

After cross-examinations, testimonies, and lengthy conversations, Mr. Swen, through the investigation, established that Party (B) witnesses, including Ma Fatu did not provide sufficient evidence and convincing information to overturn the fact that the diamond was found by Junior  of Party (A)

“My ruling was fair and unbiased, I handed down my verdict because the opposing party did not show enough prove to substantiate that they were the legitimate owners of the diamond as such, I ruled that the legitimate owners of the diamond were one Jr. and the owner of claim 12,  he further narrated.

According to the Assistant Mines Minister, testimonies from Party (B) witnesses were conflicted, contradictory and as well questionable unlike, narrations.

“Both the security and agent of Ma Fatu testimonies did not resonate with the investigation”, he added.

Mr. Swen however termed as unfair, a wrong picture that was created by others in the public relative to the issue alleging that he gave the diamond to a Mandingo person instead of the Kissi people.

He told the journalists that he is not tribalistic stating, “I can safely say that I took the best and professional decision possible, after the investigation and I challenge anyone to say my ruling was not in line with what the witnesses mentioned, during the investigation”, he added.

When he was asked about the value or cost of the diamond, Assistant Minister Swen said he will be unprofessional to be exact because of the characteristics attached to diamonds on the grounds that some of the things that are taken into consideration in such a process are: quality, clarity, shape, color and weight of the diamond.

Although he did not give an estimated value of the natural resource but one thing he was sure about was that whatever value the diamond has, Liberia as a country will defiantly benefit 3% of the total cost.

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