Liberian govt says ex-Vice President died of cancer

Monrovia- Liberia (PANA) -- The Liberian government said the autopsy report on the late former Vice President Enoch Dogolea showed he died of natural causes, the local press reported Friday.
Justice Minister Eddington Varmah was quoted as saying Dogolea died of "a complication of hepatocarcinomia (cancer) on a cirrhotic liver," according to the autopsy conducted 14 July 2000 in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.
Dogolea died 23 June 2000 in the Ivorian capital where he was rushed in a critical state by the Liberian government.
His death generated speculations that he had died from severe flogging by bodyguards of President Charles Taylor on the President's farm in Central Liberia.
But Taylor threatened to arrest anyone anywhere in the country spreading such rumours.
Varmah said the autopsy reports should now put to rest all speculations about the cause of Dogolea's death.
But some Liberians say the autopsy report came two years "too late.
" Varmah also released the report of a four-member Committee set up by Taylor to probe the death of former Youth and Sports Minister Francios Massaquoi, reportedly killed by dissidents in northern Lofa County while on a "humanitarian mission.
" He said the former Minister died in April 2001 from "gunshot wounds inflicted by armed dissidents forces fighting the Liberian government.
" The "unfortunate occurrence could have been averted if there were SSB (single side band) radio communication installed on the helicopter in which he was shot," Varmah added.
Massaquoi's death also generated controversy, especially because he was the only one fatally wounded among the occupants of the chopper.
The government Committee that probed the incident was headed by Varmah and included Defence Minister Daniel Chea, Transport Minister Francis Carbah and Health Minister Peter Coleman.

31 may 2002 15:15:00

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