Journalists assigned at the Temple of Justice housing the Supreme Court have descended heavily on the Director of Judicial Public Information, Darryl Ambrose Nmah for the press release he issued on Friday October 23 maligning the reputation of, Abednego Davis who also reports for the Daily Observer.
The journalists are under the banner, Association of Judicial Reporters of Liberia (AJURL). AJURL is one of the auxiliaries of the Press Union of Liberia with offices at the Temple of Justice.
At a press conference on October 26, 2020, the group, through its Secretary-General, Nas Mulbah, said they were pleased to categorically respond in earnest terms to a barrage of unfounded and calculated accusations levied against media institutions and practitioners and, in particular, the group’s President Mr. Abednego Davis in the October 26, 2020 editions of the In Profile Daily and other news outlets.
In several local dailies published on October 26, 2020, including the In Profile and Inquirer newspapers, the Director of Judicial Public Information at the Temple of Justice Darryl Ambrose Nmah, issued a demeaning statement against Abednego Davis and the Daily Observer accusing them of reporting misleading information about the Judiciary.
According to the reporters, Mr. Nmah, who is the president of the Judiciary Staff Association, has also manipulated undermining strategies through which workers have turned against the Chief Justice and other Associate Justices of the Supreme Court, but without conscience to guide him of his action, he goes ahead to malign other people’s character and profession by saying that they report stories without exercising professional standards of accuracy, balance and credibility.
In his release, Director Nmah further stated that “The reporter of these stories, Mr. Abednego Davis, who is the President of AJURL, has never been physically present during any of these cases and is highly seen around the premises of the Temple of Justice.”
According to the Judicial Reporters Association, none of Nmah’s statement is true but an attempt made to defile the reputations of Davis and his institution, and to manifest truly the corrupt practices some unscrupulous individuals have made the Judiciary to appear in the public eyes.
“Distinguished colleagues of the media; Ladies and Gentlemen:
We the leadership and members of (AJUR) in the most strongest term reject the accusation coming from Director Nmah against our president, our individual professional characters and noble institutions that we represent here at the Temple of Justice. At no time did the Public Information Bureau at the Temple of Justice or Director Nmah complain any of our members, neither our president Mr. Abednego Davies of ‘unprofessional conduct’ in their reportage from the Temple of Justice,” the group exclaimed.
According to the AJURL, the malicious and vindictive press release from Atty. Nmah office against institutions and the group’s president is intended to distract public attention from real issues unfolding at the Temple of Justice including but not limited to months of protest by judiciary workers who are agitating for Twelve (12) months of salary arrears and pointing accusing fingers at the Chief Justice and other Justices for what the employees claimed as corruption on the part of officials of the High Court.
“Director Nmah’s inability to properly manage or negotiate an amicable solution to the workers plight which he heads doubts his credibility. Regrettably, let the public know that as Director of Public Information at the Temple of Justice, Ambrose has failed to regularly provide briefing and/or update the media about happenings at the various courts in the country,” the release added.
The reporters association said it has no time had any discussion with Atty. Nmah about the conduct of its President, noting, “What is worth noting is the constant intimidation we receive from the Chief Justice and his Public Information Bureau whenever the hard news from the court is published.”
“We want the public to know that Nmah press release is in continuation of such threats and intimidations coming out of the Judiciary against AJURL and Liberian Journalists as a whole,” said the group.
AJURL members recalled that because of hard reports they publish about happenings at the Judiciary, one of its members, FrontPage Africa Judicial Reporter Augustine Tweh, was assaulted on the ground of the Temple of Justice by the indicted Senate Secretary Nanborlor for photographing him after trial.
In this event, the group said Director Nmah is yet to make any official statement since the matter was reported to him two weeks ago.
“Ambrose lacks professional standard as explained in his verbose against our noble institution and president. He claimed to accuse Daily Observer as an institution but again went below the belt to mention the reporter name in his calculated and misguided press release,” the group claims.
The group said no threat, intimidation or misguided press release from the Judiciary through its spokesperson or anybody will deter its resolve to provide true reports from the court.