The Inquirer (Monrovia)

Liberia: Karbor Citizens Appeal to Ellen

The people of Karbor Chiefdom, Sanquin Statutory District have appealed to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the Land Commission to intervene in the illegal claiming of their land by the people of Tarsu through one Mr. James Koffi. The people of Karbor Chief recently reacted to report that the deeded parcel of land currently being used by Equatorial Oil Palm belongs to Tarsu as claimed by Mr. James M. Kofi and his group.

It was reported by the Front Page Africa Newspaper in its September 24, 2012 edition that on Saturday, December 1, 2012, Mr. James M. Kofi and his group had a meeting with Executives of Equatorial Oil Palm Company in the presence of Sinoe County Superintendent J. Milton Teahjay, and Mr. Christian K. Wlejleh, Sr., Superintendent of Sanquin statutory District.

The paper further report that at said meeting Mr. Kofi requested the company to do business with him and his group in terms of benefits that would be accrued from its operation, since the parcel of land in question belongs to them (the Tarsu people).

The Equatorial Oil Palm Company is currently operating in the area as a result of an agreement signed between the Government of Liberia (GOL) and the company.

However, in a statement signed by Mr. Patrick Jarwlee Geegbe, Sr, General Chairman of Karbor Chiefdom and approved by Mr. Dixon N Wleh; Acting Paramount Chief of the Chiefdom, the claim put forth by Mr. Kofi and his ethnic group is indeed mischievous, misleading and a complete false dream designed to bring about confusion and disunity between the two ethnic groups.

"Furthermore, we seriously term this recent position of Mr. James M. Kofi and his group as another affront to the people of Karbor Chiefdom which has the propensity to break down the cordial co-existence and relationship as one people over the years, if not carefully examined," the statement noted.

The Karbor citizens' statement called on Mr. Kofi and his people in a public manner to take a retrospective view of the following points and see reason to desist from giving them false impression of land ownership.

According to the statement, the Karbor citizens wondered why must Rev. Edward T. Kofi, an older brother of Mr. James M. Kofi appeal to them to grant him a portion of the land in question to operate his business, if the land belongs to Tarsu Chiefdom.

The Karbor citizens' statement also wondered if the people of Tarsu have forgotten the hospitable gesture of the people of the Karbor Chiefdom which included them into the Sanquin municipality- Government, when they were suffering under the Butaw Administrative District as laborers.

The Karbor Citizens disclosed that the appeal to include them into the municipality government was made by the late Brown Pyne, Tehquah Nagbe, Nyenswah Senyon and other ancestors.

The people of Karbor then said they have always remained civil whenever they were attacked in like manner by their neighbors.

The Karbor citizens' statement said, "Therefore, we take this time once more, to draw the attention of the Sinoe County Legislative caucus, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Land Commission and the Superintendent of Sinoe County to our complaint contained in our communication dated May 31, 2012 relative to ownership of said land".

The Karbor Chiefdom Citizens also called on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to use her motherly influence to bring a lasting solution to this land dispute.

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