On a fateful Friday sometimes in May 2017, twenty-year-old Rose X received a phone call at noon to show up at a certain location in Monrovia but little did she know that her decision to honor the caller’s request would alter her life and render her miserable.
Rose(not real name) is the supposed victim in a long running sexual offense case dating far back as September 2017, involving the ex-Director General of the Internal Audit Agency, the Liberia National Police has confirmed
Her story is one of many sexual exploitation and abuse cases widespread in the poor West African nation of 4.5 million people.
In 2016, the then United Nations Mission in Liberia recorded 803 reported cases based on its human rights monitoring in all 15 counties of Liberia. In 2015, about 34 persons were convicted of the crime.
Rose and her parents like many victims are seeking justice, healing and healthcare after being reportedly abused by a man who valued her at $20 United States dollar.
“It was around the 2017 Elections and it was on a Friday,” she said as the teenager struggles for composure to explain her ordeal to reporters while awaiting treatment at a health center in Monrovia.
“A boy called Anthony Collins [who is] a relative of Paul Collins, and a resident of Brewerville, opposite my house, called and asked me: where I you.
‘I told him that I was in town and he told me that he would pass to me. So, I was sitting and he came to town along with a friend – Delando, and he asked for my exact location.
‘I directed him and he came to me. He said to me that he wanted me to see someone somewhere. I asked him: Who is this person? He said I want for you to see my uncle. And I asked him again: How will I see your uncle?
‘He said nothing will happen. if you think I am lying, let me call him. I said: Aah! I am getting scare. He said look at her, what will my uncle do to you? Let me call him so you can talk with him.
Then he called his uncle (Paul Collins). On the phone he (Paul Collins) asked me, do you know who you are talking with? And I said yes, I know who I am talking to. He said my pekin will bring you to me, don’t be afraid, I am not alone. I was a bit relief because I heard many voices in the background- both men and women. And so, I agreed and we went.
‘What I was actually thinking was that, because his woman [Kabbah Collins] was running for a Representative position, he wanted us to discuss for us to vote for her or run her campaign.
‘We went and I met him and his friends. I didn’t even sit down good and he asked me to give him something from the freezer for him to drink. While I was walking towards the freezer, he followed me and started to harass me.
‘I said Uncle Paul stop! Uncle Paul stop! You are my own uncle and I don’t expect you to do this kind of thing to me. He replied and said: move from here mehn…. You don’t know that it is for your business that I gave your father job?
At this moment, Rose said “I decided to leave and he gave me US$20. While going, he called me back and told me that I forgot about something. I immediately came right back.
I came back and I asked where? He showed his hand on the bed. So I started looking on the bed but I couldn’t see anything. And I told him that I can’t find anything that I have forgotten about.
As I turned my back to him, he came from behind me and pierced me with something.. a sharp instrument. I didn’t really see it, but it was something really sharp. I came outside and I didn’t see his nephew again. He told me not to explain to anyone what has happened between us and if I did I will die.
When I got home, I explained it to a man whom I called my play pa. He said: ooh! Just leave it, nothing will happen to you.
I started getting sick months later and I have gone to uncountable numbers of hospitals; SOS, MSF, Kingdom Care, JFK, and several names I can’t remember. I have gone to Nigeria as well but my condition isn’t improving. All the doctors continue to tell me is that my blood is low. Uncle Paul took my blood.
The Police said from their findings Paul will be charged and send to court. The former internal audit chief has denied any wrongdoing.