David Kortee Caught Between Scissors


Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

September 7, 2004

The recent visit of Governance Reform Commission member, David Kortee, to exiled President Charles Taylor in Calaba, Nigeria, has propped up threats for his dismissal from the Commission.

The Commission’s Chairperson, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, publicly made the pronouncement recently in Monrovia when she said that Mr. Kortee’s visit was something that would undermine the Commission’s credibility and as such, he needed to either continue with his persistent visit to Calaba or face dismissal.

Mrs. Sirleaf noted that if Mr. Kortee repeats same, she would not hesitate to recommend his dismissal from the GRC, saying, “either you decide to go to Calaba or remain on the commission.”

She averred that before Mr. Kortee made his recent Calaba’s visit, the Commission advised him not to go but to no avail. “The Commission does not have the authority to stop anyone from going anywhere,” she said.

Mrs. Sirleaf also revealed that NTGL Chairman Gyude Bryant has been officially acknowledged about Commissioner Kortee’s action.

However, Mr. Kortee maintained that his visit was in line with his constitutional right.

He argued that the Comprehensive Peace Agreement did not bar people from visiting anyone, “even a criminal.”

Seemingly unperturbed by dismissal threats, he asserted that, “If I want to remain on the Commission then I will not go to Calaba again”

It can be recalled that during the National Patriotic Party (NPP) 11 August 2004 program held in Sinkor, Mr. Kortee vowed to pay former President Taylor visits, boldly stressing that, “even if Taylor were to be carried to Sierra Leone, I would visit him.”

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by the Forum newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.