Harry Greaves – RIP

It is over a year since Harry’s body was found on a beach in Liberia and no explanation has been found to date.

 

Harry and I were at prep school  together in England  or to be more precise in Langton Green in Kent. Harry Augustus Greaves Jnr as he wished to be known then (he emphatically insisted on the American  postfix jnr having the same name as his father). Our headmaster, Mr Bairamian, or Bob as we called him, had a profound influence on the many Africans attending that school. Mr Bairamian’s father was an important judge in Lagos and is still revered in the legal fraternity in Nigeria. Bairamian pere ensured that the Africans at Holmewood House came from the best families. I remember accusing  Bob of trying to create an African cabinet. It was only a matter of time before one of us became president of his country. – step forward Akufo Addo in Ghana (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nana_Akufo-Addo). I mention this because without doubt becoming president of Liberia would have been on Harry’s  agenda, spoken or unspoken. His death has robbed Liberia of a future great leader.

Both Harry and I went on to Brighton College as Centenary scholars. It was Harry who persuaded me to become a chartered accountant and not a lawyer – an important decision in my life. Harry was a smooth operator  I think from the day he was born. The party had not started until Harry arrived. He was  a natty dresser as a teenager and later he was nicknamed ‘the diplomat’. I would love to tell my favourite stores about Harry but they are unprintable.  I have said elsewhere that only in the company of close friends and after copious quantities of alcohol would I let my guard down and tell. Even apparently innocent stories as Harry’s attempt to woo Fernandez’s ( a Nigerian tycoon) daughter  might cause offence in some quarters. The point is  this – and it is relevant to what follows – Harry knew the time of day.

Harry was found dead on 31January 2016 in mysterious circumstances:(http://www.liberianlistener.com/2016/03/08/tribute-to-harry-a-greaves-jr/).

Let it be said that Harry was a fearless and determined person and only extreme violence could have produced such a result. Harry was also a savvy operator from baby school days so only very powerful persons could  blind side him. This is a man who flew into war-torn Liberia to whisk his father, the retired general, out to safety in the US. One day the truth will come out. This is not just about Harry.  Whoever did this is sending a chilling signal to other presidential hopefuls. Don’t mess with us or else… This is a grave  threat to the freedom of all Liberians. President Sirleaf Johnson this one is on your tab.  History will not forget or forgive if you don’t find the murderers.

Harry, you are not forgotten.