September 18, 2003
An unscrupulous scheme tele-guided by Charles Taylor from Calabar, Nigeria, is underway to sell 800,000 metric tons of iron ore stockpiled at the Port of Buchanan for a staggering amount of 5.6 million dollars and convert same to the personal use of him and his cohorts. An agreement for the sale of iron ore was signed on February 6th, 2003, between the Liberian Mining Corporation (a wholly owned Government company) as the seller and FIDC Inc. (a foreign investment firm) as the buyer.
Since the signing of the sales contract in February of this year by LIMINCO President Anthony Deline and FIDC President Karel Sochor and attested to by Justice Minister Koboi L. Johnson, no ore has yet been exported owing to a number of reasons, prime amongst which is the fighting which engulfed Grand Bassa county. Currently, frantic efforts are being made by the parties to smuggle the ore out of Liberia before the sitting of the Transitional Government. Sources reveal that disgraced former Liberian President Charles Taylor and other criminally minded elements are the principal movers behind this elaborate criminal design. They further reveal that expatriate FIDC representatives are currently in Monrovia seeking to strike a deal with Taylor’s henchmen and MODEL in Buchanan for the removal of the ore before the sitting of the new transitional government on October 14th, 2003.
According to diplomatic observers in Monrovia, this matter ought to claim the urgent attention and action of UN Secretary-General Special Representative to Liberia, Jacques Klein, together with the international community and the Liberian civil society including political parties, to employ every effort to forestall this latest effort on the part of Charles Taylor and other criminal minded elements to rob the Liberian people of sorely needed resources.
It can be recalled that, recently, the South African Guardian newspaper disclosed that efforts were being made by Charles Taylor and his cohorts to sell the Liberian Embassy in Pretoria South Africa. The report has since not being denied although it is not certain whether the Liberian Government has launched an investigation into the matter.