Less than 24hours after reports emerged that Dr. Chris Toe's lawyers had filed a bill of information to the court for the incarceration of Rodney D. Sieh the Publisher and Managing Editor of the FrontPageAfrica newspaper, the Ministry of Justice has taken the journalist back to the South Beach jail.
Responding to a civil law court summons even before appearing before the court, the Ministry of Justice ordered Sieh's imprisonment at the South Beach prison to avoid the consequences of the law.
The Solicitor General Betty Lamin appearing before presiding Judge Boima Kontoe, told the court on Tuesday after Rodney Sieh had been transferred in the early morning hours, that the journalist was no longer at the hospital and confirmed that he had been transferred to the prison.
Solicitor General Lamin claims that the transfer of the journalist was precipitated upon a medical report from doctors at the John F. Kennedy medical center in Monrovia.
Family members say they have not been made privy to the medical report that the solicitor general based her decision to take the journalist back to the condition that led to his illness; but Solicitor General Lamin maintains that Rodney Sieh is "100% well".
Many wonder why the solicitor-general would transfer a prisoner without his lawyers being present. Now that the ministry of Justice has ordered the imprisonment of Sieh without a medical report points to sinister motives according to FPA's News Desk Chief.
"We have been saying this all along that the government of Liberia is involved in this thing from the very onset of it all. How can the court summon the solicitor general and then at the same time of her appearance she issues an order to imprison a sick person," she said.
Mr. Sieh's legal council terms the simultaneous action by the Justice Ministry as a conspiracy by Dr. Chris Toe's lawyers and the office of the Solicitor General.
The Justice Ministry in cohort with Dr. Toe's lawyers executed this action without us being present. Dr. Toe's lawyers filed a bill of information on Friday and without a medical report, our client has been taken to prison," Atty. Samuel Kofi Woods said.
'Fahnbulleh's hospital bed delivered'
It seems Musician Miatta Fahnbulleh now has her wish, as Managing Editor Rodney Sieh who has not fully recovered has been taken back to prison.
"Tell Rodney Sieh I am coming for my hospital bed so he can go back to South Beach prison where he belongs, because the hospital is not for cowards like him," these were the words of acclaimed Liberian musician Fanhbulleh, venting out her anger against FrontPageAfrica reporter Mae Azango last week.
Ms. Fahnbulleh verbally attacked FPA's Azango Last Friday in the compounds of the United States Embassy in Monrovia where the reporter had gone to attend a roundtable on religion and peace in the presence of other media colleagues.
Miatta Fahnbulleh ho was is Liberian government's Ambassador on Maternal Health in the told the reporter that she was happy that FPA's managing editor was behind bars and that the paper was closed down and that she hopes it never gets reopened.
The musician who became popular in the 80's came back to Liberia after President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf won the presidency in 2005 and has been a source for both Mae Azango and Wade Williams on stories relating to women's issues because of her outspokenness but has suddenly fell out with the reporter because she was caught up in an unfortunate situation they could not cover-up.
Genesis of saga
FrontPageAfrica's saga with Dr. Chris Toe began in 2010 when the paper reported that the then Agriculture Minister had misapplied funds intended to fight worms that had infested crops in Bong and Lofa counties. FrontPageAfrica's reports were based on documents from the General Auditing Commission and Public Procurement Concession Commission (PPCC).
After Rodney Sieh was incerated earlier in August, he said the message from the court's verdict is that Liberian journalists can no longer use government documents to report on corruption.
Mr. Sieh appealed to the Supreme Court after lower court found him guilty of libel. He maintained that the court found him guilty though he provided the government owned documents about the missing money and funds and presented evidence that jurors were bribed for a guilty verdict. The Supreme Court upheld the lower court's ruling.