Supermodel Naomi Campbell testified this week before the Special Court for Sierra Leone judges in The Hague about allegations that she received a gift of blood diamonds from former Liberian President Charles Taylor while they were both present in South Africa in 1997.
Also this week, Issa Hassan Sesay, the former convicted interim leader of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebel group, told Special Court for Sierra Leone judges in The Hague that RUF fighters have been framing stories against Mr. Taylor because the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) made promises to them and that some of them saw the Special Court as a place to make money for their evidence.
On Thursday, the much anticipated testimony of Ms. Campbell took place, with the British supermodel telling the court that two men had woken her up in South Africa and offered her “dirty-looking stones” as a gift.
Ms. Campbell, who appeared before the court after being subpoenaed by the judges, testified that she was in her room sleeping after attending a star-studded dinner that was hosted by Nelson Mandela when two men knocked on her door and gave her a pouch saying, “a gift for you.”
“When I was sleeping, I had a knock on my door, I opened and two men gave me a pouch and said, ‘a gift for you’,” Ms. Campbell told the court on Thursday.
Ms. Campbell said that she did not know the men, they did not introduce themselves to her, and they did not say who they were.
“I was not sure who they were. When they gave me the pouch, I just put it next to my bed, and I went back to bed,” Ms. Campbell said.
When asked why she did not ask the men who had sent them to deliver the gift, Ms. Campbell said, “I was sleeping, I had travelled for many hours, and I was exhausted.”
“The next morning, I opened the pouch…I saw a few stones in there, and they were very small, dirty-looking stones,” she added.
Ms. Campbell said that at breakfast, she explained the incident to her friends, Hollywood actress Mia Farrow and Ms. Campbell’s former agent Carole White, both of whom are scheduled to testify about the same incident on Monday. When one of these two persons suggested that the diamonds must have been from Mr. Taylor, Ms. Campbell said she also thought the former Liberian president had sent her the gift.
“The next morning, I told Ms. Farrow and Ms. White, and they said it must be Mr. Taylor, and I said I thought [that it] was,” Ms. Campbell testified.
Ms. Campbell said she cannot remember who between Ms. Farrow and Ms. White told her that the diamonds must have been from Mr. Taylor.
Ms. Campbell said she did not want to keep the diamonds, so she handed them over to her friend, Mr. Jeremy Ratcliffe, the former head of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund in South Africa. When prosecutors contacted her lawyers last year about the incident that took place in South Africa in 1997, Ms. Campbell contacted Mr. Ratcliffe who informed her that she still has the diamonds in his possession.
Under cross-examination by Mr. Taylor’s lead defense counsel, Courtenay Griffiths, Ms. Campbell told the court that Ms. Farrow and Ms. White gave the wrong accounts of the incident in statements they made to prosecutors.
Ms. Campbell said that Ms. White lied when she made a statement that she (White) was present when the men arrived with the diamonds to give to Ms. Campbell. In Ms. White’s statement, she said that she was the one who opened the door for the two men and offered them bottles of coke before they offered the diamonds to Ms. Campbell in a piece of paper.
“I didn’t see Carole White, I saw the two men, she might have been around the corner but I did not see her,” Ms. Campbell said.
“This is a woman that has a powerful motive to lie about you,” Mr. Griffiths asked Ms. Campbell.
“I trusted her, but I no longer trust her and no longer work with her,” Ms. Campbell responded.
Ms. Campbell admitted that Ms. White has filed a lawsuit against her for breach of contract, a lawsuit that she said she did not want to discuss in this court.
When asked whether Ms. White was present when she handed the diamonds to Mr. Ratcliffe, Ms. Campbell said, “I don’t recall that she was but she could have been, that’s 13 years ago.”
Mr. Griffiths also asked Ms. Campbell whether it was mere speculation that her friends made when they said that the diamonds were from Mr. Taylor.
“I just assumed that they were. I can’t speak on behalf of them [Farrow and White] but when it was brought, I just believed that it was,” she said.
On Monday, Mr. Sesay, the former interim leader of the RUF told the court that many RUF fighters saw the Special Court as a place to make money by giving false evidence against accused persons.
These former fighters, in their testimonies against Mr. Taylor, previously told the Special Court for Sierra Leone judges that, among other things, the former Liberian president received diamonds from RUF commanders, including Mr. Sesay, in return for arms, that it was Mr. Taylor who appointed Mr. Sesay as interim leader of the RUF, and that when RUF rebels abducted UN peacekeepers in Sierra Leone in May 2000, it was Mr. Taylor who mandated Mr. Sesay to release the peacekeepers because the RUF was under his (Mr. Taylor’s) control. On Monday, Mr. Sesay dismissed these as made-up stories.
Responding to a prosecution witness’s testimony that he made several trips to Monrovia in 2000 during which he secured arms and ammunition from Mr. Taylor, Mr. Sesay told the judges that “this is a made-up story.”
“I know that our RUF people, most of them saw the Special Court as a place to make money, so this is a made up story,” Mr. Sesay said.
A prosecution witness, who testified in 2008, told the court that when RUF leader Foday Sankoh was arrested by the government of Sierra Leone in 2000 following the abduction of peacekeepers by the RUF, Mr. Taylor invited Mr. Sesay to visit Liberia on two occasions in May 2000. The first visit, according to the prosecution witness was because Mr. Taylor wanted to know what had happened to Mr. Sankoh, and the second visit was when Mr. Taylor instructed Mr. Sesay to release the peacekeepers. Mr. Sesay on Monday dismissed these accounts as lies, saying that in the month of May 2000, he only made one visit to Liberia and that during said visit, Mr. Taylor was not concerned about what had happened to Mr. Sankoh but rather was more focused on the release of the peacekeepers.
“This witness is lying because I went to Monrovia once in May to discuss the release of the peacekeepers,” Mr. Sesay told the court.
“So the first time that Mr. Taylor called me, it was to discuss the release of the peacekeepers, it was not about Mr. Sankoh’s arrest in Freetown. That is a lie,” he added.
The prosecution witness in 2008 also told the court that Mr. Taylor told Mr. Sesay in 2000 that he (Taylor) will be made Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) if he secured the release of the peacekeepers. He promised that if Mr. Sesay helped to make this possible by releasing the peacekeepers, he (Taylor) would help the RUF in their struggle to take over Sierra Leone.
When asked on by Mr. Griffiths on Monday whether Mr. Taylor had suggested “that his appointment as ECOWAS Chairman was dependent on that outcome,” Mr. Sesay said “No, he did not tell me that.”
He also said that Mr. Taylor did not make any promises to him.
Asked again whether Mr. Taylor’s discussion with him was “in a form of a bargain…if you do this for me, I’ll do this for you,” Mr. Sesay said “No.”
“It was not a negotiation, it was not a bargain…to say there were preconditions put down for the release of the peacekeepers, no,” Mr. Sesay said.
“When I went, the way he was speaking to me, he looked unhappy…for me, he brought the understanding that we cannot fight the UN and to hold the peacekeepers will be a problem for the RUF…I had no other option but to release the peacekeepers, because I was trying to avoid other problems,” Mr. Sesay explained.
When asked whether he was going to Monrovia because Mr. Taylor was his boss, Mr. Sesay said “No.”
“Mr. Taylor was not my boss, my boss was Foday Sankoh…Mr. Taylor was never my boss, I had never taken instructions from him,” Mr. Sesay said.
On Wednesday, Mr. Sesay refuted claims by a prosecution witness that when he (Sesay) became interim leader of the RUF, he went to Liberia to inform Mr. Taylor about the disarmament of RUF fighters in Sierra Leone and that Mr. Taylor ordered him not to disarm to the UN peacekeepers in the country, saying that the UN could not be trusted. Mr. Sesay denied that such a meeting ever took place.
“I did not have such a meeting with Charles Taylor, and he never told me not to disarm to the UN,” Mr. Sesay said.
The prosecution witness who made this claim also told the court in 2008 that after Mr. Taylor had told Mr. Sesay not to disarm, “Issa [Sesay] said he didn’t believe he will continue taking instructions from Charles Taylor.”
“He said Charles Taylor now had peace in his country, that he had won elections in his country. He said Charles Taylor had already given peace to his own people and he doesn’t want he, Issa to give peace to his own people,” Mr. Griffiths quoted the prosecution witness as saying in 2008.
The witness also testified in 2008 that Mr. Taylor ordered Mr. Sesay not to handover to the UN the arms that Mr. Taylor had provided. Instead, the weapons were to be handed back to Mr. Taylor if Mr. Sesay and the RUF no longer wanted to use them.
“Charles Taylor had said he was the one who had given them the weapons. If they did not use them, they should be returned to him,” the prosecution witness said in 2008.
Mr. Sesay on Wednesday dismissed these claims as lies.
“I don’t recall because such a thing did not take place. Mr. Taylor or Yeaten [Benjamin], nobody gave me arms. When I became interim leader, nobody gave me arms. The arms that the RUF had, I disarmed all to the UN,” Mr. Sesay said.
Mr. Sesay accused prosecution witnesses of making up stories against Mr. Taylor, saying that such witnesses lied when they testified that the RUF was like a younger brother for Mr. Taylor’s National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) rebel group, or that RUF leader Foday Sankoh sought Mr. Taylor’s approval before the RUF amputated the arms of civilians in order to stop them from voting in the 1996 elections in Sierra Leone.
On Friday, Mr. Sesay reiterated his position that RUF fighters lied against Mr. Taylor because the OTP had made promises to them, promises which he said have not bee honoured.
Mr. Sesay pointed out a specific prosecution witness, Abu Keita, whom he said had made up stories against Mr. Taylor because the Prosecutor had made promises to send him and his family abroad and to give him some money for his testimony. He said when the Prosecutor had not honoured his promise, Mr. Keita had threatened to take legal action against the Prosecutor in the Sierra Leonean courts. Mr. Sesay said he read about Mr. Keita’s threat of court action in the Sierra Leonean newspapers while he (Sesay) was in detention in Sierra Leone.
“I read in a newspaper where Abu Keita was saying he will take the Prosecutor to court if the Prosecutor did not honor his promises to him before he came and testified against Mr. Taylor,” Mr. Sesay told the court.
“The Prosecutor had promised to send him and his family abroad and to give him some money. It was for him to make up some stories that will appease the Prosecutor,” Mr. Sesay added.
Mr. Sesay was responding to claims made by Mr. Keita in his testimony that on the instructions of Mr. Taylor, Mr. Sesay had mobilized RUF fighters to invade and unseat the Guinean government of the late former President Lansana Conte. Mr. Keita in his testimony said that he was among those who were sent to attack Guinea. Mr. Sesay on Friday dismissed this evidence as false.
“I did not send Abu Keita or any other person to attack Guinea. He is lying. That is a lie,” Mr. Sesay told the court.
Mr. Sesay explained that the RUF entered into Guinea because Guinean soldiers had been attacking RUF positions in Sierra Leone. There was a need for the RUF to repel the Guinean forces, Mr. Sesay said.
“The Guineans had been crossing and attacking RUF positions in 1998 and the RUF had been in Kailahun since 1991 and they never crossed into Guinea but the Guineans started attacking RUF positions from  98 up to 2000…When they returned to Guinea, RUF chased them there,” Mr. Sesay said.
Also in his testimony on Friday, Mr. Sesay gave credence to a regular theme that was prevalent in Mr. Taylor’s own testimony: that Mr. Taylor was a peacekeeper and his involvement with rebel forces in Sierra Leone was solely to bring an end to the conflict in that country.
When asked by a defense lawyer for Mr. Taylor, Silas Chikera what the nature of his discussions with Mr. Taylor were in the year 2000, Mr. Sesay had this to say:
“All the discussion I had with Charles Taylor in 2000 was about peace in Sierra Leone, and it is in those discussions that peace started and that’s why peace returned to Sierra Leone.”
Mr. Taylor has long maintained that he only had dealings with RUF rebels because he was working with ECOWAS leaders to bring peace to Sierra Leone. Prosecutors on the other hand have said that Mr. Taylor was in control of the rebel group and that in his regular meetings with RUF commanders in Liberia, he received diamonds from the rebels, gave them arms and ammunition for use in Sierra Leone, and helped them to plan certain operations that led to the commission of crimes against the civilian population of the country. According to prosecutors, when Mr. Sesay became leader of the RUF, Mr. Taylor instructed him not to allow the RUF to be disarmed by United Nations peacekeepers. Mr. Taylor has denied these assertions. Mr. Sesay told the court that the allegations are lies because Mr. Taylor was a peacemaker.
“Mr. Taylor was concerned about the disarmament in Sierra Leone and the commitment of the RUF…Even Mr. Taylor was one of the ECOWAS leaders who brokered peace in Sierra Leone,” Mr. Sesay told the court.
You only need simple logic in order to see that Naomi Campbell is in no shape or form a prosecution witness. She is a material witness whom the prosecution informed the Court about and requested the judges for her to be made to appear. These judges decisions are at time funny if not ridicule. How they can subpoenaed a witness and still called the person a prosecution witness beats my imagination. It is unfortunate that these judges who are expected to know better will focus too much on shadow and miss the substance. Moreover, in a case of this nature where finding out the truth and bringing the chief perpetrator of some of the worst crimes against humanity and helping to eradicate the culture of impunity, semantics should be of little consequences. Unravelling the truth should never be sacrifices at the expense of procedures and ceremonies. If these judges were not putting procedures and ceremonies ahead acquisition of facts and evidence, wouldn’t they have allowed the prosecution to impeach its own witness (if we are to accept the illogical notion that a subpoenaed person can be called a prosecution witness)? Is it not making their job easier when the prosecution impeaches its own witness?
Here is a definition for a material witness.
n. a person who apparently has information about the subject matter of a lawsuit or criminal prosecution which is significant enough to affect the outcome of the case or trial. THUS THE COURT MUST MAKE EVERY REASONABLE EFFORT TO ALLOW SUCH WITNESS TO TESTIFY, INCLUDING A CONTINUANCE (DELAY IN A TRIAL) to accommodate him/her if late or temporarily unavailable
Even if you slip and fall, you will attribute your slipping as been caused by the West. So, that it is really difficult debating issues with you. How can we debate these issues when your mind is set in stone with the inscription ‘MY MIND IS ALREADY MADE UP, PLEASE DON’T CONFUSE ME WITH FACTS AND EVIDENCE. You have such a distaste for thorough investigation to the extent that you all attempts at unraveling facts as a plot by the West to get rid of Taylor. For you, anyone who testify against Taylor is influenced by the West, anything that is done to expose Taylor’s heinous deeds is masterminded by the West and any decision that go against Taylor is the work of the West and the only honest, sincere and independent minded people in this world are those who testify on behalf of Taylor. If suggesting subtly that Issa Sesay is more reputable than Amnesty International is not narrow minded at its best than someone needs to tell me what it is.
Ms. Campbell was not a material witness or court witness. She was a prosecution witness, which the Judge made clear for the record. When Mr. Taylor is acquitted then the prosecution will have a chance to appeal.
If your mind is “ALREADY MADE UP,” facts and evidences should not effect or confuse you.
The judges acted on behalf of WHO??? No, please DO NOT take forever to answer I beg. Was Ms. Campbell a witness of the court?? Or did the court issue a DEMAND on behalf the prosecutors because Ms. Campbell didn’t want to be a part of?? If she was a MATERIAL/COURT witness….why didn’t the court LEAD OFF on the questionings??? I hope you find your answer within.
Morris, what were Amnesty Int’l role in this case?? SHADY to say the least….here is an int’l organization doing the DIRTY WORKS of the US and Britain!!!!! An organization that should be NEUTRAL and bring us FACTUAL REPORTINGS instead in this case, she was ERASING Mr. Hansan Bility’s emails….Yes, that was one of her acts in getting Mr. Taylor. Another act was PAYING PEOPLE, some of whom ending up as prosecutors’ witnesses with nothing but HEARSAYS.
How can the judges deemed Naomi Campbell ,Mia Farrow and Carol White as a material witness after reading their statements.
A material witness is one whose testimony is deemed essential to the outcome of the proceedings; that is, his or her testimony is of “material” importance.
I’m sure the judges must have looked at the statement and say to the prosecution;if you want to examine these witnesses it up to you,So the prosecution claiming the 3ladies are material witnesses,is simply an attempt to cohersed the judges and the court to help them carry their Burden.
And check this judgement in america; In 2009 a federal court of appeals found that former Attorney General John Ashcroft could be sued personally for wrongful detention by a material witness Abdullah al-Kidd, an American citizen arrested in 2003 and held for 13 months in maximum security prisons to be used as a witness in the trial of Sami Omar Al-Hussayen (who himself was acquitted of all charges of supporting terrorism).
There we have it”The above terror suspect case in America shows the risk for judges in an INTERNATIONAL COURT going down that route…..This is an INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT”yes the old practice was MIGHTY IS RIGHT,JUSTICE OF THE VICTOR,but these judges seems very fair to me.A very thoughful move,to distance themselve from such mess.
This is an interesting article entiltled ” Charles Taylor a man betrayed ”
That article is the pure truth and I thank God for him for written it.
Wow! The article is interesting. I think it reflects the reality, but not so much Charles Taylor betrayal by all parties, but the depth and dirt of international politics. The international spat the author mentions is vivid. It came to head when the US passed a bill that had a line inserted that requested a $2.5 million dollar reward for the arrest of Charles Taylor. At this time he was in Calaba. After this the Nigerian leader compared the act to “state sponsored terrorism” and further suggested that Nigeria will not be “harassed or intimidated” by anyone. If I am correct, a British contracting company offered to execute the “reward”. I remembered these exchanges well.
The threats to Nigeria by the Western powers had economic implications for Nigeria as well. Currently, 8% of all US oil input comes from Nigeria and the US is Nigeria’s largest oil trading partners. Obassenjo had legit concerns, there could have been an economic impact of his refusal. Personally, he would not have been hurt, well, then again, no one knows the dirt that these countries have on African leaders (the Edgar Hoover practice, I guess). While there are some credible points the author makes, according to well placed source at the State Department in DC, the “Old Man” (Obsassenjo) was seeking a constitutional amendment to allow himself go a third term, a proposal that caused he and his VP to split. From my understanding, Uncle Sam offered to turn a “blind eye” on the third term constitutional amendment and if that fails, they would push the Nigerian leader to get a well placed position at the UN. These caveat plus the public feud eventually broke the Leader. Again, this is the nastiness and “Brutus-like behavior” of international politics.
On the Liberian government side, Ellen was placed between a “rock and a hard place”. She was very much reluctant at first, but then the US had her where they needed her. Liberia has been approximately 27 years of stagnant to little development. Ellen, like any leader had tough choices to make. One refuse to submit to the over-arching pressure from the West and remain a failed state or reluctantly agree to ensure that your country has some development and increase standard of living. Though the options were not many, she made the right decision. For instance, some say Taylor stood up to the West, true he did and we see what happened to Liberia, isolation and instability. Tolbert did the same and we what happened, he lost his life, but Liberia lost more than a president, we lost everything…Economic development, social structure eroded, educational system declined, hospital and social services disintegrated and the list goes on and one…finally we arrived to our current standing in the world as one of the worlds poorest countries…again politics is filthy.
On the side of the two-face nature of the Western countries…it does not surprise. African leaders need to understand and learn to beat anyone at their game, you have to think like them and predict their next move. Chess players do such, anti-terrorist teams think like their enemy. I am not saying that the West is our enemy, I think we need to increase our economic power by proper resource management, increase our private sector (stressing consumption of local products), build institutions and maintain them, preach and promote programs that stress nationalism, the list goes on and on…then we might find partners rather than–slave masters.
Aki, thank for that link…I found it informative.
Common Sesay! How did you know they were blood diamonds? That’s what you report in ur paragraph one above. Please kindly let us know how you come to know those ‘dirty looking stones’ were diamonds.
Sylvanus, the term “blood diamonds” does not necessary means Blood are all over them! It means they diamonds were from blood and sweat of those forced to mine them for taylor and his RUF BUDDYS! My 8th grade grand-son did not need me to explain this to him when I took him to watch the movie;”BLOOD DIAMONDS.” Besides, why this has to do with the reporter? You guys are interesting fellows and sometimes seem very limited in your comprehension of the English Language! Have a Nice Weekend scholars!
Fallah Menjor or whatever you call yourself! What planet do you come from? Have you taken time to edit your post before commenting on my comprehensibility of a language am not even proud to speak. Its the same story all over. Africans taking pride in speaking another man’s language and running down their fellows for inconsenquential mistakes in a language that is not theirs. No doubt you come across as one with an inferiority complex!
Sylvanus, Fallah is proud of speaking another language as well as communicate freely his opinions and depending on the stupidity of how people bring arguements to him. Taylor is the subject here and fallah not the predicate nor adjective as most seem to think. We are here to debate the issues surrounding taylor’s alleged criminal activities in West Africa. Fallah cares less if he is called Uncle Tom or whatever. No one can take what knowledge I have, not even taylor in his highman days! Any more comments?
“The old man fought the matter out long and hard and I assure you he did his very best. When the pressure got too much and President Johnson-Sirlief made a final and public demand for Taylor to be returned to Liberia by Nigeria, Obasanjo ordered that he should be dropped at some border post and allowed to go wherever he wanted rather than for us to formally hand him over to anyone. He was on a state visit in America at the time and when it was announced to the world that Taylor had suddenly disappeared from the face of the earth and was no longer with the Nigerians all hell broke loose and everyone panicked. It was at that point that George W.Bush pointblank refused to see Obasanjo whilst he remained in Washington unless and until Taylor was traced, found and handed over to the Liberians. Now I believe that this is where President Obasanjo may have made a mistake.’
While the link you sent is interesting let me inform you that I know the fellow FEMI FANI-KAYODE very well.
This is one of the biggest sycophant and opportunist that one can ever get to know.
I was enrolled at one of Nigeria’s universities when this sycophant moved back to Nigeria from London and became the greatest critic of the Olusegun Obasanjo’s government. How this man became born again from portraying Obsanjo as the devil to seeing Obsanjo as Jesus Christ upon being appointed Special Assistant (Public Affairs) to President Olusegun Obasanjo epitomizes how spineless this fellow is.
Should anyone expected anything good to come from a man who was the chief apologist and the public face of the overly unconstitutional third term ambition of Obasanjo which was overwhelmingly rejected by the Nigerian people?
What argument can be sillier than Femi Fani-Kayode’ s nonsense? ” He would not be harassed, he would not face prosecution in Liberia, Sierra Leonne or at the International Court at the Hague andNigeria would not be pressured or harassed by anyone to extradite him anywhere. On his part Taylor was expected to live quietly in Calabar with his relatives, under the direct supervision and care of Donald Duke, the then Governor of Cross Rivers state and he was to stay out of Liberian politics and not in anyway interfere with what was going on over there.”
So, he is telling us that if Taylor truly committed those heinous crimes he is accused of, Taylor should be allowed to live peacefully because he successfully held the West African sub-region at ransom and compelled handful of West African leaders to come up with a senseless agreement. So, he is telling us that few handful of West African leaders can come up with agreements that are in flagrant violation of National and International laws and those unenlightened West African leaders expect the rest of the world to respect such agreements.
The real betrayer to Taylor is Taylor himself. He had the opportunity to reconcile the country but he foolishly thought he had monopoly over violence and that he was the wisest man on Earth and blew this golden opportunity. With LURD going for his head, the Armed embargo bitting hard and the Special court indictment robbing him of any moral ground and further isolating him, he brought out the last trick in his bag of deception by making his friends to come up with a rescue plan that would save his head and give him the opportunity to recuperate to fight another day. If Taylor had even a modicum of intelligent, he would have realized that in order to avoid another Rwanda any term could be agreed on at that moment. Taylor should be grateful to his friends for helping him avoid fate worst than those experience by Samuel Doe.
Let me highlight few of the nonsensical statements in this spineless fellow’s commentary:
He wrote “As a consequence of this concession and sacrifice which was made by Taylor the civil war in Liberia came to an immediate end, peace returned to the land and eventually a free and fair election was conducted in which Mrs. Johnson Sirlief emerged as the new President as had been planned all along.”
Ok, for this nincompoop, Taylor made the greatest sacrifice in human history by masterminding the processes that led to the slaughtering of hundred of thousands of West Africans, raping of countless women and young girls, wholesale robbery of Liberia and Sierra Leone and destroying the ambitions and dreams of million of our compatriots. This gravy seeker is really foolish to think that the victims of these atrocities and heinous crimes against humanity owe Taylor a gratitude for finally being forced to stop his madness and stop the great suffering of our people.
To take buffoonery to a higher dimension, this buffoon wrote “This was a great irony because Nigerian troops were dying in Liberia for many years in an attempt to bring peace to that country whilst the American soldiers were watching the fighting from their ships just off the Liberian coast. I know this because I went there and visited our soldiers with President Obasanjo during the course of the bitter fighting. Anyway Johnson Sirlief forgot all that and she started to talk only to the Americans. And of course the Americans wanted Taylor’s blood and his head on a plate. At the end of it .”
Rather than wasting time on winnowing the many falsehoods contained in the aforementioned quote, let me focus on the irony of a former Nigerian government official talking about the dying of Nigerian troops in Liberia as a counter to Ellen requesting Nigeria to turn over Taylor. If this ignoramus sees no important in someone accounting for thousands of peace keepers who left the comfort of their home, families and love ones in order to bring peace to their neighbors but were slaughtered in cold blood, let him be told that Sierra Leoneans, crusaders against human rights abuses and victims of Taylor’s madness are not heartless like him.
Who forgot that Nigerian troops were dying in Liberia for many years in an attempt to bring peace? Was it Ellen for talking only ( I hope he knew the meaning of the word ‘only’)to the Americans or Nigerian government officials who were willing to allow Taylor to live comfortable in Nigeria despite Taylor being the chief architect for slaughtering of thousands of Nigerian peacekeepers, journalists and civilians in both Liberia and Sierra Leone? The fact that a heartless individual of such abysmal ignorant and intellectual bankruptcy can served as Special Assistant (Public Affairs) to President Olusegun Obasanjo , Minister of Culture and Tourism, and as the Minister of Aviation for Africa’s purported superpower shows why Africa remains backward.
Only a comedian could write “Obasanjo ordered that he should be dropped at some border post and allowed to go wherever he wanted rather than for us to formally hand him over to anyone. He was on a state visit in America at the time and when it was announced to the world that Taylor had suddenly disappeared from the face of the earth and was no longer with the Nigerians all hell broke loose and everyone panicked. It was at that point that George W.Bush pointblank refused to see Obasanjo whilst he remained in Washington unless and until Taylor was traced, found and handed over to the Liberians.”
Is this man so brainless to know that such statements coming for a then high government official makes Nigeria and the government he was part of a laughing stock? Someone once said” it is better to close your mouth and allow others to assume that you are a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubts.
IF the government whose Kayode served as spokesman and Minister would engaged in such childish deceptions then why should his current statements be trusted? No wonder why the Liberian civil war took so long and it has to take the interventions of the UN and US to finally end it. Probably, it was the same deceptive acts of Kayode’s government that prolong our war.
I wouldn’t waste my precious time discussing Femi Fani Kayode’s paranoid prattling about the United States. Blaming the US for all the problems of their countries have always been the trademarks of African dictators and their stooges. Anti US propaganda has always been the canopy used by African tyrants and their cohorts to canopy their lack of leadership abilities and to justify their misrules and corrupt practices.
How does the US dropping of nuclear bombs on Nagasaki and Hiroshima and slaughtering hundreds of thousands of defenceless Iraqi women and children when bombing Baghdad relate to the trial of Charles Taylor, for war crimes committed against the sisterly republic of Sierra Leone, by the Special Court of Sierra Leone? If he is suggesting that the people of Sierra Leone don’t deserve justice for the heinous crimes committed against them simply because their territories were used by Nigerian led ECOMOG to contained Taylor madness then Kayode should campaign for the setting free of all criminals in Nigerian jails and demand that the Nigerian government stop arresting criminals until the US can be held account for her crimes.
The people of Osun State will make the worst mistake by electing this buffoon and advocate of lawlessness as a governor.
It is only acute ignorant that will give this funny chap the courage to try using Naomi Campbell’ nonsensical testimony to buttress his silly argument. I never knew Kayode was so dull and gullible to believe that a supermodel can opened her door to complete strangers at the unholy of the night, take unknown item from those strangers and never bother to know what the item was and who sent it, especially considering that when South Africa is the crime capital of the world.
Sorry, I need to throw up.
Moriss Kaneh, I dont think you know what you are talking about. Fani Kayode was never a critic of Obasanjo’s Government he was a die hard loyalist of Obasanjo infact he served throughout Obasanjo’s presidency in one capacity or the other. He was first presidential spokesman then he was made a minister twice during Obasanjo’s presidency so he was always a part of Obasanjo’s government. So when he made his opinion know about hypocritical western political interference he knew exactly what he was talking about.
I see you’ve written some long BOOK here again. Is it that you are lesser busy? just asking.. Have you retired too like your boy FALLAH.. no offence bro…
See how intelligent Mia Farrow is from how she answered questions compare to the buffoon Naomi Campbell.
Morris…so TWISTING FACTS is called INTELLIGENT??? Cannot remember a single DATE…INTELLIGENT??? She told us Mr. Mandela ushered her away because Mr. Taylor was NOT invited??? Lord have mercy.
So what was gained today in court??? Two WHITE WOMEN vs a BLACK WOMAN.
hey people! here is one little interesting article about Mia Farrow’s testimony how three small diamonds suddenly became “one huge diamond”.
Maybe this issue can be resolve if either side will get the LOG of who all were present on that day the diamonds were given to Ms. Campbell….I am talking about EMPLOYEES and some kind of explaination how does one who is NOT assigned to the compound gets in and out and how deliveries are carryout.
To get on a secure ground, one signs in….get the log.
Anti-Taylor people what do you think about Mia Farrow’s testimony? how did she perform under thorough scrutiny by defence counsel? what do you honestly think about what her testimony is worth viz-a-viz Naomi campbell’s? it will be interesting to hear from Fallah and co.
She is another piece of ice that melted in tine air under cross from the defense. Another lie is once again proven, from pieces to a huge diamond. What a shameless lady is Mia Farrow.
Harris K Johnson
Next time Mia Farrow will think twice before poke-nosing in what does not concern her. She knew absolutely nothing about Liberia or SL but had already formed an opinion about Mr Taylor’s guilt. Now that she had been publicly humiliated, if she has any shame left in her she will learn to comfirm her facts before jumping into conclusion about other people’s actions.
I have just watched the testimonies of Mia Farrow and Carol White and to be quite honest, I think that the senior judge should be paid by the defence team.
This woman has denied every single challenge by the prosecution lawyers (who seem a little timid) and allowed a belligerent and incompetent defence lawyer to try to intimidate Carol White.
If this is the face of one of our highest courts in Europe, then God help us.
I couldn’t agree with you MORE…FIVE QUESTIONS and that were all needed to be ask!!!! The most damaging was her TWISTING and LEAVING out words to best fit her story.
This defense team has shown us African why we wouldn’t take the WHITE MEN’s as FACTS!!
You must have been watching another trial. What Courtenay Griffiths QC incompetent. You must be crazy !
If Charles taylor is a war criminal and deserve to be punish???. What about Tony Blair and George Bush who were responsible for the murder of Thousands if not millions of innocent people in Iraq. If diamonds is dripping of blood ,what about petrol of Iraq. It seems on rule for one and another for others??????????
Why did you think the prosecution did not re-examine Mia Farrow? because they knew their case was destroyed by Mr Anyah beyond redemption so they saw no point in doing so.
Highest Court in Europe to try African leaders eh ‘pratt.
You are rendering Griffith incompetent; I want to charlenge you career wise. What do you do for life? Don’t tell me ,you are the president of Harvard(Hypo),cus I will walk there to authenticate your information..and please do not LIE. Await your answere….
The testimony of Mia Farrow clearly contradicts that of Naomi Campbell; There are three major arguments unfolding in this phase of the court process:
One , Naomi Campbell , judging from her statement and gesticulation in court as well as past comment ,regarding the gift of diamond, on different occasions suggest all point to an willing person not willing to let out the crystal truth .
Second, Mia Farrow , Judging from her emphasis on swearing on the Bible in court and statements on other occasions tell of a person who knows little but records very clearly that Naomi Campbell told her she(Naomi) was given diamond by Mr. Taylor. This reasonably could fetch the truth out of Ms. Campbell’s statement that she was given gifts by strangers while asleep and that she did not know the sender.
Three, We now await the accounts of Naomi’s Former agent, Mrs. White, however, given Mrs. White’s accounts on BBC it is reasonable to arrive at the conclusion that Naomi Campbell did receive diamond from Mr. Taylor : Quantity , yet to be established; quality also unknown but was definitely not Ms Campbell’s kind of type so she passed it over . Well fine she didn’t like it or them else they would have fragmented into jewelries around the world, making origin location difficult. Because they were dirty and uncut the would now knows were they are in the first place.
Hurray Prosecution! Naomi was and is not you witness but i believe you made a risky but an
incredible request to have this gift issue brought to the world’s attention.
To Taylor sympathizers who maintain Mr. Taylor is been wrongly accused, i say continue your aimless fight. This not in the Jungle anymore else i would have dead for expressing my opinions.
You sat in greater Liberia while people drowned to death in the Moa River , in the Sowa River and in the Mano River; oh yes, with your guilt gone, you sat in Congo Town while people loose their limbs to so called special forces and you sat there in Monrovia as people with bleeding limbs were hunted by Hynda and Lions in the terrifying bushes .
Could you assist me in answering the following Qs.
Who supplys African dictators with weapons????
Who buys the blood dripping diamonds and wear them???????
Is not the money of these dictators in western europe and America???????
I seriously believe that the real criminals are the suppliers and the safe keepers of the money and the blood diamonds polishers and wearers.
Baba, your questions never find answers and solutions . I guess you even have the guts to blame God for wars that man carries out to certify his greed, like the case of Mr. Taylor. This is like blaming Africa’s backwardness only to colonization when you and i know that there are countries colonized by other powers yet these countries are ranked highest among developed nations.
If your answer is that we should not blame the suppliers and other people. Then why should Charles Taylor be held responsible for SL war? Was Charles Taylor personally fighting in SL?
You see, this is the clear contraction that suffers the Taylor haters. You want to use a false standard to hold Taylor accountable for crimes that other people personally committed. But when others argued that we should use that exact standard to hold others accountable then you say such things like: “I guess you even have the guts to blame God for wars that man carries out to certify his greed.”
Let see if we can do this with your statement: I guess you even have the guts to blame Taylor for wars that Sierra Leoneans carries out to certify their greed.
Vem, please allow me to let know that billions of dollars of charles taylor, or should I say Blood diamaonds money are sitting in USA banks, how did it get there????. Is not the same charles taylor that was polished and helped to get to power by the westeners. Charles taylor is a scapegoat and was offered to cover up the big picture. God is not to blame and got nothing to do with the evil that we commit. By the way could you name one country that benifited from the colonisation/ agression with facts dear friend. the backwardness that you talk about is as a result of the colonisation and the slavery and as a result of the arms and weapons that get sold to innocent african children in exchange of the blood dripping diamonds ,etc……
Naomi Campbell is telling the truth and only the truth. Mia Farrow confrims that Naomi told them at the breadfast table that two strange men had awaken her, from the knock of her door at night. So Naomi is consistent that she did not know who those two men were. Secondly, Jeromy Radciffe in South Africa have stated that he recieved three pieces of stone from Naomi Campbell , not a large diamond as Mia Farrow says. So again, we see here that Naomi is consistent in her accounts that the gifts were not a large diamonds but three pieces of “dirty stones.”
The real issue is why did Jeremy Ratciffe keep those “dirty stones” all those years, about 13 years now when he was given the “dirty stones” by Naomi to give to charity? Why did he keep them?
The dosage of sensibility injected into VEM this time is just right. Look, I got to the medication while drinking my coffee this morning. As of now you’ve been crown the king of “SENSABLE SENCE”…Good job bro.
WOW ! Morris Kanneh,
First time I have sat and read your entire post….thanks for taking cousin4 advice….
Sesay, Kudos for the live interview you gave to BBC yesterday. You did your best in analysing the trial objectively. I reckon you may be better-off giving oral summaries on TV than what you are doing here! It was nice to see you on TV.
Some of you guys have really distaste for investigation. If you would have just taken few seconds to investigate, you wouldn’t have written “Moriss Kaneh, I dont think you know what you are talking about. Fani Kayode was never a critic of Obasanjo’s Government he was a die hard loyalist of Obasanjo infact he served throughout Obasanjo’s presidency in one capacity or the other.”
His name is Fallidiot or Alan Smith the agitator.
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