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|Ellen Urges Sen. To Respect Court’s Ruling As Lawyers File Bill of Info|
|Published on September 30, 2008||Email To Friend Print Version
By D Kaihenneh Sengbeh & Kennedy Yangian
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has requested the Liberian Senate to respect the ruling of the Supreme Court regarding the reinstatement of suspended Pro Tempore Isaac Nyenabo.
Deputy Press Secretary Charles S. Nelson said the President hopes that the Senators would abide by the ruling of the court to reinstate their leader after he had been suspended for six months.
Addressing Executive Mansion reporters in Monrovia yesterday at the Foreign Ministry, Mr. Nelson said the President paid a visit at the Senate and ‘she hopes that the senators will follow the due process of law.’ The President’s spokesman said though he could not give details of the discussions, respect for the rule of law by the senate was important.
The President is in no meddling into the affairs of the Senate, Mr. Nelson defended when quizzed by journalists on the requests made to the Senate.
Sources at the Senate however told this paper last evening that the President only paid a visit but discusses nothing relating to the leadership impasse in the upper house.
The Supreme Court of Liberia last week instructed members of the Liberian Senate to reinstate suspended President Pro-tempore Isaac Nyenabo to his position with immediate effect.
In a mandate issued Tuesday, September 23, 2008, the high court ordered the Liberian Senate to restore Nyenabo’s authority pending the determination of a petition filed against them for the unlawful removal of the pro-tempore.
The Supreme Court mandated the senators concerned which include Lahai Lassana, Abel Momolu Massaley, Jewel Howard-Taylor, Prince Y. Johnson, Adolphus Dolo, Mabutu Nyanpan, Gbezohngar Findley and other senators acting under their control to appear before the full bench of the high court on October 4, 2008.
The court’s mandate issued by the Justice in Chambers Jamesetta Wolokollie directed the senators to file a return to the petition for a writ of prohibition.
The action of the court was in reply to a Writ of Prohibition filed by the National Democratic Party of Liberia (NDPL) by and thru its acting Chairman J. Hodo Merriam.
Senator Nyenabo was recently suspended by a resolution of majority of his colleagues for what they described as “gross administrative ineptitude and political patronage.”
The senators have refused to reinstate their chief, an action local and international observers have considered disrespect to the nation’s highest court and interpreter of the constitution.
Though the Senate has already closed for three month break, yesterday Vice President Joseph Boakai, President of the Senate, called a mass meeting of the senators to find a common ground in the leadership impasse, but legislative sources said the meeting ended in a deadlock.
Senators are saying their former Chief would remain suspended until they return to business next January.
Meanwhile, Lawyers representing suspended Pro-tempore of the Liberia Senate have filed a Bill of Information to the Supreme Court of Liberia.
The bill follows the refusal of the Liberian Senate, under the leadership of Acting President Pro-tempore, Lahai Lasannah, to re-instate Senator, Isaac Nyenabo as Pro-tempore based on the Supreme Court’s mandate.
In the four-count bill of Information filed on Monday to the full bench of the Supreme Court under the signature of Cllr. Daku Mulbah, the lawyers said despite the Supreme Court order, Senator Nyenabo is yet to be restored to his previous position.
The bill claimed that the senators led by Lahai Lasannah refused to include the re-instatement of Senator Nyenabo on its agenda items to entertain it for discussion in their last sessions despite efforts by some senators to have same urgently considered.
The lawyers further claimed that the act on the part of the senators is highly contemptuous, and prayed that the court should order the senators to show cause, if any, why they should not be held in contempt for disobeying, defying and ignoring the Supreme Court’s order.
Suspended Pro-tempore Isaac Nyenabo was ordered reinstated based on ruling by the Supreme Court Justice in chambers, Jamesetta Howard Wolokollie on September 23, 2008, following a Writ of Prohibition filed to the court by the National Democratic Party of Liberia (NDPL).
Responding to the ruling, the senate under its acting President Pro- Tempore, Sen. Lahai Lassana, said the senate will discuss the issue of Senator Nyenabo reinstatement when the senate returns from its agriculture break in January 2009.