Boakai Drops Sirleaf’s Expulsion Case

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Old friendships die hard (pictured): Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Joseph Nyumah Boakai in their heydays as President and Vice President of the Republic of Liberia

…Says they now smoke peace pipe

Lawyers representing former Vice President and standard bearer of the former ruling Unity Party (UP), Joseph Nyumah Boakai on Tuesday, November 12, 2019, told the Supreme Court that the former Vice President has withdrawn his opposition to the reinstatement of former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, after she was expelled for over a year from the party.

The lawyers explained that Mr. Boakai took the decision after holding discussions and reconciliation meetings with his long-time friend and former boss, with who he served  at the helm of national leadership for 12 years.

“After several discussions and reconciliation meetings, we unanimously agreed to resolve our differences by withdrawing our appeal filed before the Supreme Court, challenging the reinstatement of Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and three other partisans by the National Elections Commission (NEC) Board of Commissioners,” the lawyers said, quoting Vice President Boakai’s acceptance of the board of commissioners’ decision to withdraw the case.

Immediately afterwards, the Supreme Court entered into a judgment without opinion, where they affirmed the ruling of the NEC Board of Commissioners and subsequently reinstated former President Sirleaf, Patrick Worzie, Senator Conmany Wesseh, and Madam Medina Wesseh to the party.

The reinstatement decision resulted when lawyers representing the parties (Sirleaf and Boakai) filed with the court a joint ‘Notice of Voluntary Withdrawal’, to which they agreed that their respective clients were aware of, and gave approbation to the voluntary withdrawal of the Bill of Information filed before the Court.

Shortly after leaving the courtroom, Madam Sirleaf’s lawyer, Jonathan Massaquoi, described VP Boakai’s action as announced by lawyers representing him, as “victory for the opposition UP.”

Cllr. Massaquoi said with this judgment, it means that the former Vice President and the former President have truly reconciled their differences, and they can now go about with “political business” in the best interest of the peace and unity the country enjoys.

“This is victory to the rule of law, and that of the UP and its many supporters,” Cllr. Massaquoi said.

Massaquoi said that since the UP has respected the law, the rights of the expelled partisans were restored and reinstated into the party.

Some of the arguments against Madam Sirleaf were that she refused to support Boakai during the 2017 presidential elections, which he lost to George Manneh Weah, Standard Bearer of the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), was in violation of the UP’s constitution. Also the UP claimed that the then President Sirleaf’s meeting with elections magistrates, and some commissioners of the NEC in the privacy of her home just near the eve of October 10, 2017 elections was “inappropriate.”

Other arguments were that behaviors of those expelled constituted sabotage, undermined the existence of the party, and they also violated party rules requiring members to support all UP candidates in the election.

However, Madam Sirleaf maintained her innocence and argued that her January 13, 2018 expulsion decision by some members of the UP was made without the two-thirds vote required by the party constitution.

She argued that the action contravened the 1986 Constitution, and the Party’s Constitution that calls for due process, and a decision of two-thirds majority votes of the executive committee, which they argued was not respected by those that expelled them.

Initially, the NEC Board of Commissioners (BoC) reversed the ruling by its Chief Dispute Hearing Officer, Cllr. Muana Ville, rejecting the reinstatement argument of the expelled partisans of the UP that included Patrick Worzie, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Senator Conmany Wesseh and Madam Medina Wesseh.

In that ruling, the NEC’s commissioners said, “The January 13, 2018 expulsion decision in this matter, having been made without the two-third votes required by the UP constitution, is hereby declared null and void as having no legal effect upon Mr. Worzie, Madam Sirleaf, Senator Wesseh and Madam Wesseh.”

It was that ruling, Boakai and his supporters rejected and announced an appeal before the Supreme Court, which they later withdrew.

9 COMMENTS

  1. After Ellen and her group supported the CDC to win, what actually they did accomplished by doing so and look what Liberia and Liberians are faced with presently. The real question for me and to those UP partisan that choose to support CDC and not UP, do you folks really cares about Liberia or did what you did out of ignorance? I supposed Ellen and her group should have simply gain full membership to CDC rather fighting to reunite with UP.

  2. They say every political struggle is a matter of narrative and those who master it in political environments of mostly uniformed citizens may be rotten, yet come out smelling like roses. And, sadly, our country fits the observation to a T.

    Little wonder, then, when USD $10 billion (exact amount classified) of donor countries’ funding was being squandered, EJS and JNB gifted themselves – amid poverty of the vast majority – more compensation packages than Obama and Biden thus bequeathing “pretty much a recession”. But, incredibly, UP is a member of the COP/ CPP organizing continual protests though stableness indispensable to making our country a destination for investors and investments.

    Of course, there won’t be any incentive to stop a December 30 “Step Down” protest timed to impact the 2020 senatorial races, especially, after the post-June 7 “Save the State victory of an oversold Dillon. Liberia failed the MCC scorecard, which Sierra Leone passed, because the “masters of her narrative” wanted it that way. May our Lord God protect a land caught in the tangled web of local and foreign deceptions and intrigues.

  3. Thanks to both our former president and Vice president for harmonizing their differences in the interest of peace and reconciliation. They have both put Liberia first in this instance and hope other Liberians will follow their example in moving our country forward. This is the kind of Liberia we envisage in which government exists and acts for the people. The two leaders have exemplified that “in union strong, success is sure, we cannot fail”. Long live our two leaders for this magnanimous achievement. For without peace, there can be no development. Our leaders must therefore focus on peace building, if Liberia is to develop in a meaningful way. Winston Churchill opined many years ago that “if the human race wishes to have a prolonged and indefinite period of material prosperity, they have only got to behave in a peaceful and helpful way toward one another.”

  4. Yes. But no matter what peace pipe former President Ellen and former VP Boakai may smoke, Ellen is the winner. For she has succeeded in evading the War Crime Court by sitting George Weah in the EM. In fact, make no mistake, she loaded and brought the pipe for Boakai to smoke. And do you know what ingredients were in the pipe? But I am surprised TOTALLY by our President GW.
    I mean, the Kru son of the soil from dirty-water-filled Clara Town, has let those war killers go scathe free? When innocent children, (chanting Joor Weah, Joor Weah!) supporting him, died in the US Embassy shooting in 2005? You know what? Many educated Liberians, including me, want to come back home. OH SWEET LIBERIA. But the status quo in our country cannot let them. Julius A. Momo – Stone, USA

  5. From all indications, the two former leaders and their reconciliation talks are necessary if UP is to withdraw from fielding a candidate and allow the opposition to consolidate and concentrate on who should lead them to 2023. UP led for 2
    12 years, and even had a candidate for the 2017 elections and in the runoff election , and failed to win. Seeking a third bid at the presidency, while there are potential candidates that can mount an effective political challenge collectively, the two former political leaders influence might push the Unity Party in that direction. The country needs to turn the corner away from the present political slide by defeating the CDC regime. First seek the political power and all other things commented here can be resolved politically. But first Unity . The reconciliation talks are good to deal with all the leadership of the Unity Party, than a political divided Unity Party. It is all about Weah Must Go.

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