Lawmakers Order Arrest of Journalist

Members of the Liberian House of Representatives (lower house of Parliament) have voted to have Philibert Browne, Managing Editor of the Hot Pepper Newspaper, arrested and brought before the House over corruption allegations the journalist made against its members.

The decision was taken on November 27, 2018, following the failure of Browne to appear before the House on that day to help in investigations into an allegation the journalist made regarding the printing of 10.5 billion Liberian dollars by the country’s Central Bank.

On November 14, 2018, during a radio show dubbed the “Afternoon Conversation” on OK FM, Browne, who was the in-studio guest, alleged that more than 15 members of the House of Representatives received bribes from the Central Bank Liberia to approve the printing L$10.5 billion banknotes.

Following the radio show, he was summoned by the leadership of the legislature on November 22 and November 26. He however failed to show up on both days citing poor health, and asking for the meetings to be rescheduled, a request the House rejected.

The MFWA urges the leadership of the House of Representatives to withdraw the warrant issued for the arrest of Browne, given that the journalist’s failure to appear before it is due to ill-health of which he has formally informed the House.

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