Montserrado County Representative Edward Forh has clarified recent claim by suspended Montserrado County, Superintendent Grace Kpaan that he requested for bride during a meeting with her. In an interview over the weekend, Rep. Forh, who is in the United States to do his dissertation in a PHD program in Education, said at no time did he request for such bribe, when in fact there is no money left.
He said the claim of the suspended superintendent is an attempt to "blackmail" him because he had personally warned the superintendent against the misuse of the county fund and was able to cancel two checks, something for which he believes the superintendent tries to implicate him in something that never happened.
On claim that this has been recorded, the lawmaker said when the superintendent talked about remaining funds, he saw this as a joke because there was no money left and therefore, responded to that in a joking manner.
But Rep. Forh maintained that there was no money left to lend credence to the superintendent's claim of requesting bribe. He wondered how possible would it be to take away any remaining funds of a county when one must account for such funds.
"There is no balance money and I never solicited bribe from Supt Kpaan. The total sum of Montserrado County of 2.5M was divided equally among the 17 Districts giving each District US$151,900.00. Where then is the balance. The Supt was just being mischievous which is quite unfortunate," he said.
Citing some reasons why the superintendent falsely implicated him, the lawmaker said on Tuesday, April 16, 2012 Supt. Kpaan authorized a check for US$12,000 (check # 00772468) against the New Kru Town Library project and that when he surprisingly discovered the check at the Eco Bank Vai Town Branch, she told him that it was meant for the Fast and Prayer Holiday, which he objected to and had the check cancelled.
He added that on May 1, 2012 the Supt. again authorized another check of US$14,635.71 (check # 00772471) on the New Kru town project which she and the fake contractor encashed before he could find out.
On May 7, 2012, Rep. Forh said he wrote the superintendent and demanded that she complete the Library project or have the US$14,635.71 restituted to the District's account. She later replaced 80% (US$11,500) of the money from her operational funds to the District 16 account and asked him to drop the matter. He stated further that she even visited his home with one official of government to beg him to drop the matter if she replaced the funds. Rep. Forh also referred to County Resolution of August 28, 2012 for evidence of replacement.
"On July 3, 2012, I wrote the Minister of Internal Affairs asking him to put a hold on all payments for projects until the Caucus, the PMC, and Supt's office could verify their completion. By then, a check of US$18,434.25 (check # 00772472) was written on the District 4 Nirvlin Bridge project. By this time (July, 2012) the Superintendent discovered that I was not in her game and perhaps for fear that I might expose her, she set out to blackmail me by threat of an alleged illegal recording," he said.
Meanwhile, Rep. Forh, who is Chairman of the Montserrado County Legislative Caucus, promised to cut short his study visit to the States to address himself to this "scandalous news,' and this attempt to sway away public attention about the suspended superintendent's disrespect and contemptuous act to that August body.