president-sirleaf

Leymah Gbowee received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for leading a women’s peace movement that helped bring an end to the Second Liberian Civil War in 2003. This enabled the 2005 election of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to be president of Liberia — making her the first female elected head of state in Africa and a fellow Nobel laureate of Gbowee.

Introducing Mr. Tarty Teh

Mr. Teh has long sought to shed light on the dark corridors of Ms. Sirleaf’s past. 

Below is a note he wrote to her after her testimony to the “101st” U.S. Congress subcommittee on Africa.  Testimony that has been completely off the radar and little known - even amongst her biggest detractors.  I provide much more detailed commentary on this in posts below.

But first…Mr. Teh’s letter in response to the testimony Ms. Sirleaf entered into that session of Congress.

'Dear Mrs. Johnson-Sirleaf:

I attended the Congressional hearing of June 19, 1990 at which Ambassador Herman J. Cohen of the U.S. State Department and others testified on Liberia.  You were scheduled to testify but could not; but your written testimony was entered into the records of the Sub-committee on Africa.  It is that testimony that I am responding to.

I would not have known why you try to hard to avoid mentioning any truths that favor anyone whom you oppose if I hadn’t learned much later on that you want to be president of Liberia.  Although I do not submit that your presidential ambition suffices as reason for the totality with which you avoid mentioning any opposing truths.  I have come to understand how you think such subterfuge is to your advantage.

You diminished yourself as worthy of my respect when you failed to note the conditions of total discrimination against African-Liberians before the coup of 1980; when you used the word “oligarchy” not to describe the status quo of 133 years under the Americo-Liberian Dynasty, but instead used it to describe President Doe and his flock of new arrivals into the rank of the privileged, the rank that was once the exlusive province of the Amercio-Liberians.  But what I find almost unforgiveable is not any of the above.  Instead, it is your sinister evocation of your dead mother’s name in your lamentation before a Congressional hearing, and portray her as someone who died before reaching the Promised Land.

"Saturday in Alexandria where I live I will bury my mother," you wrote.  I suppose you buried here as you promised.  You are a good daughter for doing that.  I am sure you have marked the spot where she lies..  I think you’ve said far too much about your mother in a forum where her memory does not serve its most useful purpose.  I will therefore, spare her name further misuse; instead, I want to give you a worse-case scenario that actually happened.

President William R. Tolbert, the most democratic and most reform-minded of all before him shares a watery mass grave with 13 members of his cabinet.  Among the unlucky 13 was a man called C. Cecil Dennnis, Jr., an intellectual with whom I enjoyed fighting a good fight.  Although President Tolbert can be said to have a grave of sort, be it a crowded one, Thomas Quinwonkpa has no grave of any description.  If Moses Duopu has a grave, only Charles Taylor knows.  Then there are the more than 5,000 Gios, Manos, Krahs, Mandingos, Grebos, Krus, and others who still rot in the bush and in the streets of Monrovia and Buchanan.  One of them, a Red Cross relief worker, received rapid rounds of machine gun blasts before falling to the ground, but gathered his last breath and courage to raise his head one more time and asked, “Why, Why?”

Why are 5,000 persons dead?  So that Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf can become president of Liberia?  Or are we being forced to give so many lives so that Charles Taylor, the true symbol of “conspicious consumption” and a convicted criminal, can have a second chance to prove to us that he will not import Jaguars from Liberia to Boston for his personal use as he did when he was chief procurement officer for the Samuel Doe Administration?

And do you really want to complain about President Doe’s wearing a “three piece suit”?  Is that, in your opinion, a good example of the waste in government, or might not your living in a penthouse over a bank building as Minister of Finance be a better example of both waste and “conspicious consumption”?  If that does not fit, let’s try your having all your children on government scholarship while many Liberian villages had no school.  I think your compalin about Does’s three piece suit is not as trifling as it seems.  It represents a deep prejudice that is burnt into the subconcious of the Americo-Liberians.  Nothing is more incongruous than seeing a “country man” in a three piece suit.

By what compelling reason did you expect president Doe—a then high-school dropout—to care for the nation’s finances any better than did you and college-educated Tolbert?  President William Tubman had only eighth-grade education.  So no one expected him to do much.  He built the longest paved road in the country from Monrovia to his farm in Totota for a total of 80 miles at a time when Liberia was enjoying a blance of trade surpluses.  He did well for an eight grader, shouldn’t we say?

We must all speak out against wrong, not only when it affects us personally, but when we know about it.  Have said that, you must be pittied for being jailed by the Doe regime.  I had just fled Liberia when I learned that you had been incarcerated.  I was not alarmed so much by your imprisonment as by the suggestion that you might be sent to Belleh Yallah.  I, therefore, wrote a letter to plead to President Doe, begging him not to send you to Belleh Yallah.  I didn’t care what your crime was.  I suspected it couldn’t be worse than mine.  My sole reason for not wanting you to go to Belleh Yallah was that I had been there as President Doe’s personal prisoner and didn’t think it was a safe place for a woman, no matter what her crime. You were lucky.  You were charged with something, so you had a chance to mount a defense.

Because he jailed me, abused my civil and constitutional rights, has he, therefore, forfeited his right to be credited for the good deeds he has done, however few?  Should I now work hard to bury any positive truths about him?  This is what I call simplistic absolutism.  You are absolutely good, and Doe is absolutely bad.  Of course, there is no such thing.  The problems in Liberia are more complicated than that.  And you, the Americo-Liberians with (not despite) your access to sound education, lay the groundwork for the mess we are in today.

I was hoping that I would learn something from you despite my suspicion of your deep prejuidice.  I thought you would give me a new insight that I am probably too bitter to afford.  I wanted to respect you for the depth of your perception, even if I ended up not agreeing with you.  Instead,  you shovel old cliches, practice uninspired and transparent duplicity, and mouth plain, outright lies.

I don’t think you should be trusted to tell coming generations of Liberians the real reasons their fathers, mothers, aunts, uncles, cousins, and other kinsfolk died in such numbers while you sat in Washington D.C., drawing up plans about who would occupy this or that government position once Charles Taylor reached the Executive Mansion.  You would quickly sacrifice the truth—as you have done countless times—to advance your ambition.  That is no way to heal a bleeding nation.  That is no way to lead.

Mrs. Johnson-Sirleaf, you have to learn how to follow, because so far if you have any leadership qualities, they have failed to show in all of your vainglorious pronouncements.  Besides, to follow is sometimes an ennobling endeavor.  It may help you see your own relative worth in its proper perspective.  Maybe that will help you understand that you don’t have to be an Americo-Liberia to have an oversized ego.

Please let me hear from you.

Sincerely yours,

Tarty Teh

Signed Tarty Teh

Source:  From A Nation in Terror: Author James Youboty  Page 164-166. 

More back and forth between Sirleaf and Teh here.

Africa is rich with multiple natural resources. They have millions of people living in poverty who would happily go to work mining those natural resources while earning a decent wage. The problem with Africa is that even after receiving hundreds of TRILLIONS of dollars from countries around the world for the last 50 years, they have done nothing to better the lives of their citizens. The “leaders” of Africa are all extremely wealthy from all the financial aide Africa has received over the decades. The corruption runs rampant and the “leaders” freely steal from the coffers while their literally die in the streets. Everyone in the world should refuse to send any money or relief items to Africa. Force them to stand on their own or waste away. They could easily be a world superpower with all the natural resources and labor on hand but they sit with their hands out demanding we take care of them. Africa is one big welfare scamming ghetto and we need to stop supporting them.
— 

— Rachel, Ellen Sirleaf became president of Liberia in 2008/2009 since than the woman has done zero to help her country, no new laws, no beneficial legislation.. Zero!! she walks around with her million dollar jewlery on while the Liberian citizens live in desperation. Even through the Ebola crisis The president did Zilch.. All she did was tell them to pray.. Can you belive that!!!?????
The Liberian government and president is sitting on the money and using it in illegal and selfish ways instead of funding to build better schools, homes, roads, water wells etc… It’s a shame rachel, it’s a shame. What hurts the most is knowing that even after spending millions each year to help Africa… It NEVER gets Better because the leaders are setting its people backwards. God bless people like Harry and Seesio who make it their duty to help.. But the cycle will repeat itself.. Africa has become a land mine for the wealthy who want to make themselves look helpful and feel good about giving back.

Opinons.. Opinons… Please :)

SUBMITTED

It has been said for over a decade at least that sending Aid to Africa is making the situation worse as it never leaves the leaders and never gets to those that need it. The Leaders simply get more wealthy and the poor just get poorer. Sending money is not the answer anymore there.

RANKNAMETITLEAFFILIATION
1Tim CookCEOApple
2Mario DraghiPresidentEuropean Central Bank
3Xi JinpingPresidentPeople’s Republic of China
4Pope FrancisPontiffCatholic Church
5Narendra ModiPrime MinisterIndia
6Taylor SwiftPop StarBig Machine Records
7Joanne LiuInternational PresidentMedecins Sans Frontieres
8John Roberts Jr.Chief JusticeU.S. Supreme Court
9Mary BarraCEOGeneral Motors
10Joshua WongActivistHong Kong Pro-Democracy Movement
11Johnetta Elzie and DeRay McKessonProminent voices for nonviolent protestFerguson, Mo.
12Jeremy FarrarDirectorWellcome Trust
13James ComeyDirectorFBI
14Ai-Jen PooDirectorNational Domestic Workers Alliance
15Mark CarneyGovernorBank of England
16Ellen Johnson SirleafPresidentLiberia
17Howard SchultzChairman and CEOStarbucks
18Bill and Melinda GatesFoundersBill & Melinda Gates Foundation
19Pete FratesAdvocateALS “Ice Bucket Challenge”
20Mike Duggan and Kevyn OrrMayor and Former Emergency ManagerDetroit
21Helena MorrisseyCEONewton Investment Management
22Beatrice MtetwaLawyerHuman rights activist in Zimbabwe
23Elon MuskCo-Founder and CEOTesla Motors and SpaceX
24Tri RismahariniMayorSurabaya, Indonesia
25Mark ZuckerbergFounder and CEOFacebook
26Yao MingAnimal rights activist and former NBA starNBA (Retired)
27Jeff BezosFounder and CEOAmazon.com
28Kailash SatyarthiFounderBachpan Bachao Andolan
29Lei JunFounder and CEOXiaomi
30Bayan Mahmoud Al-ZahranLawyerSaudi Arabia
31Lebron JamesForwardCleveland Cavaliers
32Mark BertoliniCEOAetna
33Ngozi Okonjo-IwealaFinance MinisterNigeria
34Raj PanjabiCEOLast Mile Health
35Adm. William McRaven (Ret.)ChancellorUniversity of Texas
36Carolyn MilesPresident and CEOSave the Children
37Frances HesselbeinPresident and CEOFrances Hesselbein Leadership Institute
38Jamie DimonChairman and CEOJPMorgan Chase
39Anthony FauciDirectorNIAID (NIH)
40Patrick AwuahFounder and PresidentAshesi University College
41Mitch DanielsPresidentPurdue University
42Richard PazdurDirectorFDA’s Office of Hematology and Oncology Products
43Courtney BanghartHead CoachPrinceton Tigers Women’s Basketball Team
44Travis KalanickCEOUber
45Jimmy FallonHostThe Tonight Show
46Daniel BarenboimGeneral Music DirectorBerlin State Opera
47Adam SilverCommissionerNBA
48Richard LiuFounder and CEOJD.com
49John MackeyCo-CEO, Co-FounderWhole Foods Market
50Akira MiyawakiDirectorJapanese Center for International Studies in Ecology

Fact vs. Fiction

"…these people, many of them Children" - A breakdown of her incongruent statements from her biography to her 1990 U.S. Congressional testimony supporting Charles Taylor.  Quick summary and links to source material here.  It’s all in her own words.

The U.S. Department of Justice and their FARA.gov reports are as revealing as they are obscure.  Nearly $30,000,000 USD sent from the Republic of Liberia to LISCR, LLC for lobbying services.  In six months!  Summary and links to sources (Foreign Registration Acts bi-annual reports) here

Corruption and President Sirleaf?  These emails from her top aid and minister expose the depth of the deception.  And LISCR, LLC is at the heart of the issue.

We are just beginning to post our research so please continue to check back with us…much more below.

WORLD'S GREATEST LEADERS These ­extraordinary men and women are transforming business, govern­ment, philanthropy, and so much more. Here, our second annual list. Read more about the list here.

RANKNAMETITLEAFFILIATION
1Tim CookCEOApple
2Mario DraghiPresidentEuropean Central Bank
3Xi JinpingPresidentPeople’s Republic of China
4Pope FrancisPontiffCatholic Church
5Narendra ModiPrime MinisterIndia

6Taylor SwiftPop StarBig Machine Records

7Joanne LiuInternational PresidentMedecins Sans Frontieres
8John Roberts Jr.Chief JusticeU.S. Supreme Court
9Mary BarraCEOGeneral Motors
10Joshua WongActivistHong Kong Pro-Democracy Movement
11Johnetta Elzie and DeRay McKessonProminent voices for nonviolent protestFerguson, Mo.
12Jeremy FarrarDirectorWellcome Trust
13James ComeyDirectorFBI
14Ai-Jen PooDirectorNational Domestic Workers Alliance
15Mark CarneyGovernorBank of England
16Ellen Johnson SirleafPresidentLiberia
17Howard SchultzChairman and CEOStarbucks
18Bill and Melinda GatesFoundersBill & Melinda Gates Foundation
19Pete FratesAdvocateALS “Ice Bucket Challenge”
20Mike Duggan and Kevyn OrrMayor and Former Emergency ManagerDetroit
21Helena MorrisseyCEONewton Investment Management
22Beatrice MtetwaLawyerHuman rights activist in Zimbabwe
23Elon MuskCo-Founder and CEOTesla Motors and SpaceX
24Tri RismahariniMayorSurabaya, Indonesia
25Mark ZuckerbergFounder and CEOFacebook
26Yao MingAnimal rights activist and former NBA starNBA (Retired)
27Jeff BezosFounder and CEOAmazon.com
28Kailash SatyarthiFounderBachpan Bachao Andolan
29Lei JunFounder and CEOXiaomi
30Bayan Mahmoud Al-ZahranLawyerSaudi Arabia
31Lebron JamesForwardCleveland Cavaliers
32Mark BertoliniCEOAetna
33Ngozi Okonjo-IwealaFinance MinisterNigeria
34Raj PanjabiCEOLast Mile Health
35Adm. William McCraven (Ret.)ChancellorUniversity of Texas
36Carolyn MilesPresident and CEOSave the Children
37Frances HesselbeinPresident and CEOFrances Hesselbein Leadership Institute
38Jamie DimonChairman and CEOJPMorgan Chase
39Anthony FauciDirectorNIAID (NIH)
40Patrick AwuahFounder and PresidentAshesi University College
41Mitch DanielsPresidentPurdue University
42Richard PazdurDirectorFDA’s Office of Hematology and Oncology Products
43Courtney BanghartHead CoachPrinceton Tigers Women’s Basketball Team
44Travis KalanickCEOUber
45Jimmy FallonHostThe Tonight Show
46Daniel BarenboimGeneral Music DirectorBerlin State Opera
47Adam SilverCommissionerNBA
48Richard LiuFounder and CEOJD.com
49John MackeyCo-CEO, Co-FounderWhole Foods Market
50Akira MiyawakiDirectorJapanese Center for International Studies in Ecology
How Liberia's President Survived The Ebola Crisis

There must be moments in Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s life when she feels that she is being tested beyond her limits. In 2006, she took over a country that had been devastated by years of horrific civil war that claimed countless lives and destroyed much of the country’s already insufficient infrastructure. She herself almost lost her life during political turmoil decades before and had been imprisoned for her political views on numerous occasions. Against all odds, President Sirleaf, who became the first woman in Africa to win election as head of state, put her country firmly on the road to recovery and emerged as a figure of hope and inspiration for what had been a broken nation. She was re-elected in 2011.

http://twt.lu/1HGtFFO

The Curious Case of Willis Knuckles

To most Liberians his name instantly conjures up the infamous “Knuckles Gate” and “threesome” sex scandal early on in President Sirleaf’s term.  Officially he was her most senior advisor and held the position of Minister of State for Presidential Affairs.

If anyone outside of Liberia, that follows Liberia, is aware of him they would more than likely figure it was a bumbling Minister in a land full of corrupt, bumbling ministers who ultimately resigned and left the scene.   

Those people would be wrong.

But first some pertinent information:

Mr. Willis was involved in a sex scandal.  He submitted his resignation to President Sirleaf around February 27th, 2007.

Here’s how President Sirleaf accepts his resignation in light of the “threesome” sex scandal…

"I believe that Minister Knuckles brought to his family and friends much pain, but one which should not be allowed to tarnish his long years of service and commitment to our beloved country," she said in a radio address on Monday evening.

BBC quotes in the story further: ‘Mrs Johnson-Sirleaf said that her presidential affairs minister “has been a friend and close associate for many years”’.

Quotes found at BBC here.

From her autobiography “This Child Will Be Great” p. 246 

Very quickly I was able to convince Willis Knuckles, a successful businessman and an old friend who had presidential aspirations himself, to put aside his own announced presidential candidacy and come work with me.  Willis was known to be a sound manager; when he agreed to join my team, I asked him to head the campaign team.

And who is Willis Knuckles?  And why should we care?  As the saying goes “Birds of a feather flock together”.

Mr. Knuckles is the Chairman of Cellcom.  Cellcom is the mobile telecommunications company owned by Mr. Yoram Cohen.  The same Yoram Cohen who owns the lucrative LISCR, LLC that has exclusive rights to the Liberian Maritime Registry.  The company that gave Mr. Cohen the resources to start Cellcom.  

As for Mr. Cohen he began his familiarity with Liberia serving Charles Taylor as PR/Lobbyist in Washington D.C.  With Taylor’s support he was able to wrestle the lucrative Maritime rights from The Liberian Registry which invented the “flags of convenience” based on advice, and a need, from the legendary shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis in 1948.

Ms. Sirleaf, spot on, says this about the Maritime program during the Taylor years in her autobiography “This Child Will Be Great” p.50: 

It wasn’t until Charles Taylor took power that some changes in the program were instituted - not so much to bring greater benefits to the country but to allow Mr. Taylor to better control the revenue himself.

(Interesting enough, during the Taylor years, although U.S. sanctions were imposed on our timber and diamonds, no sanctions were ever imposed on our maritime program, even though it was known to be one source of funds used to purchase arms.  The registry was one of the governments few legal sources of income during the Taylor years.)

So fast forward to 2008 and the insanely lucrative Maritime contract is up for renewal.

Ms. Sirleaf continues on page 50 further detailing upcoming negotiations on Maritime. 

At the time of this writing, my administration is at the beginning of renegotiating the terms of this important program.  Whatever the results we can say that today the Liberian International Ship & Corporate Registry, or LISCR, is the second largest fleet in the world, with more than two thousand ships representing some 10 percent of the world’s oceangoing fleet.  Some 40 percent of U.S. Ships representing some 10 percent of the world’s oceangoing fleet.  Some 40 percent of U.S. Ships are registered under the Liberian flag.  

She continues on Page 51.

However, there are changes that must be made.  Over the years the registry’s financial management has come under some criticism.  What’s more, as with Firestone, the question of whether the nation’s legitimate interests have been truly served in profit division remains an open one.

We want to ensure that LISCR not only generates revenues for Liberia and that those revenues are properly accounted for and used in the best interests of Liberia and the LIberian people, but that the registry becomes a more fully involved participant in the country.

Sounds fabulous doesn’t it?  With Ms. Sirleaf it often does.  If one didn’t know better one would readily buy into the media attention claiming she is exactly the prescription needed to solve Liberia’s, and by extension “Africa’s” problems.

That was until Minister Knuckles laptop fell into the hand of the Liberian press.  

Below are a series of email exchanges by Willis Knuckles and executives of LISCR, LLC about the negotiating of the Maritime Registry.  These were obtained and widely reported by Front Page Africa now known as Front Page Africa Online.

Email concerning the former Finance Minister, Antoinette Sayeh, putting pressure to put this extremely lucrative contract out to public bid.  

On Tue, 2/12/08, Abraham Avi Zaidenberg <avizaid@liscr.com> wrote:

Dear Willis,

For your approval I have enclosed the invitation letter for the President. Just a thought of concern, I

have info from a reliable source that Sayeh is pushing for the registry contract to be put in an open

bidding process. Is there any truth to that?? Also what is going on with putting a comrade

commisioner in place? I have told you that in order for the funds to be moved around smoothly we

need someone there that can be controlled.

Regards,

Avi

Note:  Keep in mind Mr. Knuckles had resigned from his post nearly a year earlier.

And another one from Avi the next day….

Wednesday, 2/13/08, Abraham Avi Zaidenberg <avizaid@liscr.com> wrote:

”Dear Willis,

Yoram is in Conakry and prefers not to be disturbed. We will try to take care for it after he returns.

Considering all of the money we have spent on the President, I was shocked to hear that they were

trying to give the deal to someone else. Well like they say dont believe what you hear in Liberia !

Anyways Who is this Kessely? and should we break him in with 5 or 10 thousand???

Best Regards,

Avi

"Willis D. Knuckles, Jr." <jrknuckles@yahoo.com> wrote:

Date: Wed, 13 Feb 2008 08:06:28 -0800 (PST) Subject: Re: President’s Invitation To: Abraham Avi Zaidenberg <avizaid@liscr.com> CC: Yoram Cohen <ycohen@liscr.com> Avi, thanks for your message. It is good hearing from you. Here below are several matters for your information and consideration. 1. Im pushing for someone to assume the commissioner job his name is Binyah Kesselly. He has already been briefed and he is prepared to follow our terms. 2. Keep an eye on Keller my suspicion is that he is doing something with Morlu that he is keeping away from us. I am checking. Either way Morlu is soon to be out of our ways for good. 3. I have been assured by the President that the process will not be opened to bid. I was also told by her that at the synopsium some harsh words might be used at LISCR. But keep in mind, that in order for her to look transparent she has to be on the offensive dont take it personal its just for show. As for Sayeh, she has nothing to do with the decisions on the maritime deal. 4. Matters about me you promised to speak with Yoram and get back to me about the balance thirty thousand as per his promsie. I am overdue to return to the U.S. for my medical checkup. Any feedback yet? Willis

Note: The reference to “Morlu” is John Morlu.  The aggressive and highly respected Auditor General put in place, and paid for, by the European Commission. And it should be noted close personal friends of the Sirleaf family for years and ardent supporter for her in her 2005 campaign.  That was until he began to do his job as Auditor General.

Conversation about Kesserly continues.  Willis reply to Avi from LISCR, LLC about who he is, reassuring him that he’s in the proverbial “bag”.

"Willis D. Knuckles, Jr." <jrknuckles@yahoo.com> wrote:

Date: Thurs, 14 Feb 2008 11:22:51 (PST)

From: “Willis D. Knuckles, Jr.” <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: Re: Re: President’s Invitation

To: Abraham Avi Zaidenberg <avizaid@liscr.com>

CC: Yoram Cohen <ycohen@liscr.com>

Avi,

Kesselly father founded our party he is now deceased. He is a little boy from america he is hungry and desperate so trust me he will do what we say.

I think you should start him of with two thousand we dont want him to get greedy yet. The only problem now is the gratuity promisecd. How soon can the funds be put in the account ?

Ellen has promised that LISCR will get the deal but only on the basis if the transfer is made to the account. Please advise she is depending on me and I dont have enough preliminary information to give her.

Willis

Continued several months later… Willis writes the owner of LISCR, LLC and Cellcom Mr. Yoram Cohen…  Reference to “Banks” is Liberian Justice Minister “Philip A.Z. Banks” 

(NOTE: By this time the highly regarded Minister of Finance Sayeh has left the administration quite prematurely only serving 1.5 years in the Sirleaf administration.  It is widely assumed and reported that President Sirleaf’s refusal to put Maritime up for public bid was one of the key factors of her departure)

——-Original Message——-

From: “Willis D. Knuckles, Jr.” <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Sent: Monday, August 11, 2008, 6:35 AM

To: “Yoram Cohen” ycohen@liscr.com

Subject: LISCR Update

Yoram,

Wish to remind you I am having my people make the necessary arrangements to ensure our mutual goal of a contract renewal for LISCR.

However, there is still a need for more payments to be made to Kesselly and Banks to secure there favorable participation. Also what is the upadate on what was promised for the President? I will expect that with this contribution we will be able see rapid movement to secure the deal. Frankly, if all of these issues in this email are not attended expeditiously and become subjected to the usual excuses and delays, we may have to reappraise the matter of my relationship with Cellcom/LISCR and, certainly, table the discussion of any new matters.

Yoram replies…

On Tue, 8/12/08, Yoram Cohen <YCOHEN@LISCR.com> wrote:

From: “Yoram Cohen” ycohen@liscr.com

Subject: Re: LISCR Update

To: “Willis D. Knuckles, Jr.” <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Date: Tuesday, August 12, 2008, 8:54 AM

Dear Willis, It has been more than two weeks since I have last hear from you. I still don’t have the

information I have requested. After several payments made to Kesselly and others we are no further than when we began. Also I am hearing that your boss is trying to give the deal to Cashin and Pan African Capital to run it out of the Ib bank??? Cashin is a friend of her im sure she will give him a jump start.. What does Estrada have to say about this? I feel like this whole process is a game. I am not going continue any other form of contribution until I receive the formal authorization that you and

Estrada have promised me.”

Best regards,

Yoram

Note:  ”Estrada” is Bernard Estrada.  Brother in law to Ms. Sirleaf.  Married to her sister Jennie.  ”Steve” is a reference to Stephen Cashin, Ms. Sirleaf’s long time friend and business associate who has been instrumental in helping Ms. Sirleaf achieve her critical acclaim through the many prestigious boards he sits on.  His investments in Liberia have skyrocketed and many believe it’s no coincidence given his relationship with the President

—- On Sat, 8/16/08, Willis D. Knuckles, Jr. <jrknuckles@yahoo.com> wrote:

From: Willis D. Knuckles, Jr. <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Subject: LISCR UPDATE

Date: Saturday, August 16, 2008, 6:00 AM

From: “Willis D. Knuckles, Jr.” <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Sent:Wednesday, August 13, 2008, 3:20 AM

To: “Yoram Cohen” ycohen@liscr.com

Subject: Re Re: LISCR Update

I am working out these issues. First, meeting with Ellen to discuss finalization of your deal.

I believe this approach is better and I can follow up upon her arrival and at the Foreign Ministry even

before she comes.

Question: Can we arrange for the money to be put in escrow for Estrada? He has assured

that even though he is on the board of IB he will not decieve you. Besides look at it like this Ellen

has told me that Steve is not interested in the Registry.

I understand your feeling but I believe it is a bureaucratic omission at the Ministerial level and not a

direct snub from her, she has promised that LISCR will get the deal. In any case, the T.Max formula

is not the method to use.

Willis

The emails continue…

On Sun, 8/17/08, Willis D. Knuckles, Jr. <jrknuckles@yahoo.com> wrote:

From: Willis D. Knuckles, Jr. <jrknuckles@yahoo.com>

Subject: Re: Fw: President’s Invitation

Date: Sunday, August 17, 2008, 2:46 AM

On Thurs, 2/14/08, Abraham Avi Zaidenberg <avizaid@liscr.com> wrote:

Dear Willis,

You are the man! What would we do with out our PR man.It is only prove to me again that

the issue of the pr men is extremely essential. Anyways please inform Madame President

that her concerns will be addressed. Yoram told me that he has already informed you that

the first payment of US$1 Million will be made after our contract is signed.

Regards,

Avi

This scandal blew up and became a full-on 3 alarm scandal for Ms. Sirleaf. Per her custom she instantly commissioned an investigation that did nothing.  The infamous “Mintz Report” came up somewhat inconclusive.  The emails were real but were most likely “hacked” according to the investigator.  And the commissioner to handle this investigation?  None other than her dear old friend Elwood Dunn he of the famous quote she cites pushing for Taylor at the Sub Committee on Africa, U.S. Congress June 19, 1990.  (#1 post below)

In short complete bullshit.


As for Mr. Willis Knuckles he laid low for some time in what was dubbed “Knuckles Gate II”.  But now he’s back, to the consternation of many within her own party, front and centerfor the re-election campaign.  

And as Steve Jobs likes to say “One More Thing”….

Knuckles-Gate II Corruption Saga Dragnet Widens

A computer in Pres. Sirleaf”s home was used to transact $600,000 Cellcom deal

By J. Wehtee-Maotee Wion

Washington, DC, January 12, 2009: As the Willis Knuckles multi-million dollar email bribery solicitation scandal investigation unfolds in Liberia, more troubling details are emerging linking the use of a computer in Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s home to transact the payment of US$600,000.00 for the controversial Monrovia-based Cellcom telephone company. Is the President’s home and computer now the new nerve center to run controversial business deals?


A January 11, 2009 story by FrontPageAfrica.com, headlined: Sirleaf Contradicts Knuckles-Gate II Findings; Diverts US$600,000.00 Spot to Sierra Leone, the Liberian President told Star Radio on Saturday in Monrovia that a friend of hers identified as Finda Koroma of Sierra Leone transacted the $600,000.00 deal from the computer in the President’s residence. The transaction by Finda Koroma took place on August 26, 2008, eight days after FrontpageAfrica published the Willis Kunckles emails story on August 20, 2008, and after the President’s office was notified formally of the pending publications of the emails.

President Sirleaf’s sister, Jennie Bernard, wife of another Knuckles-Gate II scandal suspect, jumped into the fray by telling FrontpageAFrica that the computer in the President’s home was available for use by “everyone.” Jennie’s husband, Estrada Bernard is Legal and National Security Advisor to President Sirleaf.

Cellcom is at the center of the corruption scandal. It is owned by Yoram Cohen who runs Liberia’s lucrative maritime program in Virginia near Washington, DC. Willis Knuckles is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Cellcom. Mr. Bernard later joined Cellcom’s Board, and according to one of the emails, Knuckles negotiated with Cohen for a US$2,500.00 a month salary and a free phone for Bernard.

In the True Whig Party era under President Tolbert, Bernard was Knuckles’ boss. Bernard was Minister of Labor, Youth and Sports and Knuckles was Assistant Minister for Sports under Bernard. Knuckles served as Minister of Public Works and later promoted as Minister of State for Presidential Affairs in Sirlef’s government. He resigned in disgrace after porno-style sex photos of him with two prostitutes in a Monrovia hotel surfaced and published on the Internet.

Mr. Bernard would be appointed thereafter and be named to his current post of Legal and National Security Advisor to President Sirleaf, a conduit and Knuckles’ point man in the President’s office. According to the published emails, now out of government, Knuckles is then the consummate dealmaker for people and businesses seeking government contracts and Bernard would become Knuckles’ ear to the President.

Yoram Cohen was President Charles Taylor’s public relations guru while Taylor was on a rampage destroying Liberia in a 14-year bloody civil war to oust Samuel Doe. In the end, 250,000 Liberian lives wasted in the orgy, and Taylor would later reward Cohen with running Liberia’s multi-million dollar lucrative maritime program, the Liberia International Ship and Corporate Registry, LISCR.

Despite several independent audits that Taylor and Cohen were spending millions of dollars on arms for the war, and million$ more unaccounted for, there have been recommendations that Cohen and LISCR contract should be terminated. Baptized by now in the corrupt political culture of Liberia, Cohen will go to any length, spend any amount to keep his grip over the running of the lucrative maritime money machine.

Stephanie Zawalski/Europa Newswire March 10, 2015 New York UN Women hosted a star studded event at the Manhattan Center last Tuesday evening to promote global gender equality. Headliners included Bill de Blasio, Hillary Clinton, Melinda Gates, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Rebecca Minkoff, Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, and Patricia Arquette. The room was packed with Clinton supporters who roared with enthusiasm after host Sade Baderinwa “accidentally” introduced Clinton as a presidential candidate. Clinton did not comment on the remark after she took the stage, she began by acknowledging the work of the women who came before her as well [Read More] The post Planet 50/50 by 2030 appeared first on Europa Newswire.