Press Statement from the office of the Solicitor General of the Republic of Liberia

(Monrovia, Liberia, February 9, 2022) The office of the Solicitor-General has described as false and misleading reports circulating in certain quarters of the Liberian society that the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General, Cllr. Frank Musah Dean Jr., does not support the arrest and prosecution of defendant Alexander B. Cummings and others by the Ministry of Justice for the crimes of forgery and criminal conspiracy currently on summary before Criminal Court “A” at the Temple of Justice.

The office of the Solicitor-general dismisses these claims as unfounded and maintained that the Solicitor-General is taking direct orders and instructions from the Minister of Justice as required by law to spearhead and supervise the trial of Alexander B. Cummings and will continue to do so until he is instructed to discontinue on valid legal grounds that the Minister of Justice may deem fit.

In a release issued today, the office of the Solicitor-General further clarifies that under the New Executive Law of the Liberia, the Minister of Justice and Attorney controls, directs and supervises the prosecution of all cases in which the Republic of Liberia or an agency of the government is a party and the Minister of Justice has been such role since the arrest and subsequent commencement of the trial of defendant Alexander Cummings and others.

The release said the clarification is necessary to dispel rumors and forms of vicious lies being spread by detractors that the Minister of Justice is silent because he does not support the trial of Alexander Cummings and others.

The release said only the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of Liberia is vested with the legal power and authority to offer direct legal advice to the government or disagrees with the government or the President in cabinet, and can still keep his job, and where the Solicitor-General and the Minister of Justice Attorney-General differ on a question of law, which is quite rare, it is the opinion or the position of the Attorney-General that prevails.

Clarifying further, the release said Cllr. Frank Musah Dean Jr., and Cllr. Sayma Syrenius Cephus do not have any differences in opinion, whether in trial strategies or procedures, and are very much united in ensuring the successful prosecution of Mr. Alexander Cummings and others for the crimes of forgery and criminal conspiracy.

The office of the Solicitor-General, according to the release is elated by the fact that the Attorney-General as part of his unwavering support for the prosecution of Alexander Cummings and others have deployed and continues to order the deployment of armed ERU security personnel around the vicinity of the Temple of Justice to provide security during the course of the trial.

The Solicitor-General congratulates Cllr. Frank Musah Dean Jr., for the level of support given and continues to give the prosecution department during these critical times of the trial of defendant Alexander Cummings.

The release dismisses as completely baseless claims that there is a serious rift between the Solicitor-General and the Attorney-General and maintains that every instruction or order that is being executed by the Solicitor-General in the criminal trial of Alexander Cummings and others is directly based on his job description and is executed at the behest of the Attorney-General who is closely supervising the trial.

The release reminded detractors to read carefully the functions and responsibilities of the Attorney-General under the New Executive Law and noted that if the Attorney-General was not in support of, or not in full agreement with the criminal prosecution of Alexander B. Cummings and others, as it is being insinuated in certain quarters, he would have personally taken seize of the matter, and thereby proceed to unconditionally withdraw and dismiss the matter.

Meanwhile, the release concluded that because of Cllr. Dean has seen, and analyzed the allegations against Mr. Cummings and others and is comfortable with the quantum of evidence and the quality of witnesses that the prosecution intends to produce at the trial, he has remained supportive of the prosecution’s efforts in the trial of Mr. Cummings.

Signed:__________

Cllr. Sayma Syrenius Cephus

Solicitor-General/RL

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