Sierra Leone News: Body found – suspect confesses – murder charges pending
The Director of Public Prosecution, Easmon Ngakui, has announced the discovery of a woman’s body believed to be Massah Kaikai, on Wednesday 3rd April 2019. The body was found in a shallow grave in the compound of a house off Wilkinson Road, where Massah used to live. Dr. Simeon Owizz Koroma and a mortuary team, accompanied by the Sierra Leone Police, exhumed the body on Monday 1st April 2019.
Kaikai has been missing since early August 2018. Adrian Fisher, of the Ministry of Justice, said, “We are 99% certain the body is Massah.” The exhumed body was examined by Dr. Koroma at the Connaught Mortuary on 2nd April 2019. He said, “The body was starting to decompose because it was in the ground for approximately 7-months.” Ayo, Massah’s mother, observed the body at the mortuary. She said, “That corpse is not my daughter. That body with the coroner; somebody is covering up.” Ayo sent pictures of the body to her other daughters in the US and both daughters said the same thing.
The body exhumed on Monday is not their sister. The Inspector General of Police, Richard Moigbe, said they will be conducting forensic and DNA tests to confirm the identity of the victim. In October 2018, a suspect, Ibrahim Mansaray, Massah’s driver, was arrested and charged with larceny and kidnapping. The case came to the Courts but was adjourned several times. Mansaray was eventually granted bail. The suspect provided very little information as to Massah’s disappearance but was in possession of Massah’s I-phone and sold her household property. Massah Kaikai is a 40-year old American citizen born of Sierra Leonean heritage, who ran a small business training women and people with disabilities.
Ayodeji Babalola (nee Ademu-John), Massah’s mother, said, Massah is a young woman, diligently giving back to her country and promoting development. “Massah has traveled the world and been safe,” she added. In late March 2019, a team from the US Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) arrived in Freetown to coordinate with the Sierra Leone Police. On 25th March 2019, Police uncovered a lead that had gone uninvestigated.
According to the Police, a witness was tracked and questioned. He told Police he was a friend of Mansaray. He said Mansaray called him and asked him to bring two shovels and picks to the compound where he and Mansaray dug a small hole. The witness said he was not aware of what would be put into the hole. After cordoning off the area with armed guards, a mortuary team and the Police exhumed a woman’s body, which was wrapped in a window curtain.
The primary suspect, Ibrahim Mansaray, was brought to the scene and confronted with the evidence. He confessed to killing Massah and burying her in the compound. The Director of Public Prosecution said the previous charges of kidnapping will be dropped and the suspect will now be charged with first degree murder.
Thursday April 04, 2019.