Justice Minister, Others Linked To Diamond Saga

...Despite Winning Primary

MONROVIA-Some Gbarpolu Citizens have linked Justice Minister, Cllr. Frank Musah Dean and several others in the controversial 53.34 Carats Diamond saga as they vow to commence an unstoppable protest at President Weah’s Jamaica Resort to demand their precious stone.

“We want to thank the President, George Manneh Weah for authorizing the state security through the Justice Ministry to investigate and prove the right owner of the diamond. But we are so disappointed in the Justice Minister, Cllr. Frank Musah Dean that after the finding shows that the diamond belongs to Claim#12 F. Survey Smith Town Gbarma Mining District, he is claiming that the government is the owner of the diamond”, the group claims.

Speaking at their media conference over the weekend, the Miner of the claim, Mr. T. Daniel Sluaward said the Justice Minister informed them in his communication that their Mining License had expired 11 months back before they discovered the diamond, and as such the diamond belongs to the state.

However, he rubbished the report and said the Ministry of Mines and Energy should be blamed for what he terms as being irresponsible and careless from the Ministry’s end.

According to him, he paid the Ministry for the renewal of his license, and a flag receipt was issued to him, but due to the Ministry being negligent, they put him on hold to process his license and claim their system was always down.

“I do not owe the government, I have been in the mining sector for over thirty years, not a day I owe the government and the Ministry is so careless and irresponsible that when you pay for your license, they just give you the flag receipt but to process the license, they shift the blame on their inactive system,” he added.

“If even my license expired, there is no law in the mining industry that says the government should claim my diamond but pay the delinquency,” Mr. Sluaward further explained.

He challenged the Justice Minister to quote any mining law that states that when a miner‘s license expires, the diamond should automatically belong to the government.

Meanwhile, Smith Town Mining Chairman, Mr. Fomba Smith accused the Assistant Mines and Energy Minister, Emmanuel T.T Swen of being a center player of the diamond saga.

“Minister Swen asked me to go to Kpaku, who was in possession of the diamond and register it under Smith Town where the diamond was found. Chairman Smith disclosed.

”I was later surprised when he told me that I should listen to Kpaku to register the diamond under Weasua, Claims #12 G. Survey after I explained to him that the diamond was found in Smith Town. He changed the first report and lied that the diamond was no longer from Smith Town but Weasua.

Also speaking at their media Conference, Mr. Mohammed Kamara Jr. who found the diamond claimed that the diamond was hijacked from him with criminal intentions by the Kpaku group and since then he hasn’t seen the diamond.

He said, due to the size of the diamond, he was not convinced that it was a diamond but trusted a friend whose names he never measured and gave them the diamond for further verification that in turn linked the diamond to Kpaku and others, making it complicated to get his diamond.

Mohammed added that after their finding shows they own the diamond, the government is now using a different strategy to seize their diamond. In the Justice Minister’s communication addressed to Mines and Energy Minister, Gestler E. Murray on June 5, this year stated; “Dear Hon. Murray; We present our compliments and herewith forward to you the investigation Report into the origin and ownership of the 53.34 carat diamond, found in Gbarpolu County.

The findings of the Report are that the 53.34-carat diamond was discovered and recovered in Smith Town, Gbarma Mining District #2, Lofa River, Claim 12 F Survey. We wish to refer you to Article 22 (a) of the Constitution, which states, “Private property rights, however, shall not extend to any mineral resources on or beneath any land or to any lands under the seas and waterways of the Republic. All mineral resources in and under the seas and other waterways shall belong to the republic and be used by and for the entire republic.”

Consistent with the above Constitutional provision, every mining activity must be licensed by the Government, through the Ministry of Mines and Energy. The records have confirmed that the Claimant’s License expired on May 25, 2022, and the diamond was found on April 21, 2023, it is our considered opinion that the Claimant lost all legal rights, privileges, and claims to the diamond,” a communication under the signature of Justice Minister Cllr. Frank Musa Dean noted.

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