Samukai ‘Escapes’ imprisonment?

MONROVIA-It appears that the longest serving Defense Minister under the regime of former president, madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, from 2006 to 2017, still carries his military smartness and remains quite.

It was a surprise to many residents both at home and abroad on Thursday, August 19, 2021 when a team of people who described themselves as friends of Brownie Samukai went to the court and made a payment of US$ US$173,276.05 dollars(One hundred and seventy three thousand two hundred seventy six dollars and five cent).

This amount is to fulfill a court’s order in February 28, 2020 ruling that he and his two deputies pay 50% of the amount within six months or risk imprisonment.

Samukai, along with his two deputies, Joseph Johnson, J. Nyumah Dorbor were held by criminal court “C” on February 24, 2020 for misapplying the Armed Forces of Liberia personnel funds and were given six months grace period to restitute US$1,147,656.35 or 50 percent of the said amount and thereafter enter appropriate arrangements to pay the remaining portion in one year.

His failure would have taken them to jail. Early this week, his lawyers filed a motion with criminal court “C” preying that the honorable court for extension in the time frame to complete the full amount hooked for by the court.
Samukai, in the motion noted that due to the covid pandemic which has affected all economies globally and other financial difficulties beyond their control, they were unable to make full payment of the 50 percent (US$573,828.175 as instructed by the court.

As the result of this, Samukai and his deputies asked that honorable court to enlarge the six months period granted them to make the 50 percent payment of the amount to be restituted by one calendar year from August 25, 2021 to August 25, 2022.

But in less than 48 hours, court records showed that his lawyers withdrew the appeal letter.
Not knowing that they were aiming at something greater. So, on Thursday, August 19, 2021, scores of his supporters went to the court to make the 50 percent payment.
The payment was the third installment of the 50 percent of the US$1,147,656.35 he and his officials were hooked for.

Initially, the friends of Samukai made the payment of ten thousand and eight united states dollars respectively as part of the senator’s elect portion of the money. The amount to the total of US$1,147,656.35 dollars as part of his share.

Speaking to judicial reporters following the payment on Thursday, August 19, 2021, the chairlady of the group, Yangar Sherman said their presence at the court was to meet up with court’s mandate.
She furthered that Lofains are peaceful people and as such, they see it good to adhere to the court’s order by meeting up with the stipulated period given Samukai by the court in paying the amount guilty of.
“Our son and senator-elect is not a criminal, that is why we have decided to stand with him to pay the balance 50 percent of the money.”

Samukai was elected Senator for Lofa county overwhelmingly in the 2020 By-Elections, but was prevented from taking seat due the charges brought against him by some citizens of Liberia.

Now that he has paid this amount to the court, it is not known what will be the next ruling from the court.

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