Credible information reaching the Daily Observer has it that the legal team of suspended Associate Justice Kabineh Ja’neh would prohibit their client from attending the Senate’s impeachment trial if there is no judgment into the Writ of Prohibition filed against members of the House of Representatives at the Supreme Court.
“We lawyers will not let Ja’neh attend the impeachment trial without any judgment from the stay order that was imposed against the House of Representatives by then Justice-in-Chamber Sie-A-Nyene Yuoh,” the source quoted Ja’neh’s legal team.
“The legislature is proceeding wrongly and we are not going to subscribe to that illegal decision to allow Ja’neh to appear before that body for any trial,” the legal source further quoted.
Ja’neh’s legal team’s challenge comes immediately when the Senate summoned Ja’neh and subsequently asked him for a response within 10 days, which would end on November 30.
The Senate’s summon of Ja’neh resulted while justices of the Supreme Court are yet to set a date as to when they would vote to reach a quorum whether to grant or deny Ja’neh’s writ.
Initially, the justices tied in a vote of 2 to 2, which could not find a quorum for the decision, leading to the appointment of Judge Bioma Kontoe (Criminal Court C) as ad hoc justice to fill the vacancy created as a result of Ja’neh’s suspension and to also break the tie vote.
In total disbelief, while the justices were still in their room of deliberation, though they had been there for over a week, the senators issued Ja’neh with the summon, which it is believed, Ja’neh is considering not to honor.
Up to press time yesterday, there is no indication whether the justices have reached a conclusion to vote over the matter.
In August, then Justice-in-Chamber Sie-A-Nyene Yuoh issued a Writ of Prohibition on the impeachment proceedings against Associate Justice Kabineh Ja’neh by members of the House of Representatives, until the Supreme Court can fully review its merit.
To Justice Yuoh’s greater surprise the lawmakers, in their 48th day sitting, voted and threw out the Writ of Prohibition through a motion proffered by Montserrado County District #16 Rep. Dixon W. Seboe, who was also a member of the Ad Hoc Committee to review and investigate the Bill of Impeachment as well as the write-up of the Impeachment Proceedings.
Not being satisfied with their action, the lawmakers immediately voted and submitted the bill of impeachment to the Senate, who had concurred with their colleagues and subsequently issued the summon for Ja’neh’s trial.
The case came about when the House of Representatives argued that they have the authority to suspend their rules and appoint an Ad Hoc Committee.
Their position by then ran contrary to that of Justice Ja’neh’s lawyers, who maintained that House Speaker Bhofal Chambers violated Section 57.3 of the Rules and Procedures of the House of Representatives by constituting a Special Ad Hoc Committee and immediately forwarding Ja’neh’s impeachment bill to the committee.
It may be recalled that the 8-man ad hoc Committee was appointed on Tuesday, July 17, to review and investigate the Bill of Impeachment as well as the write-up of the Impeachment Proceedings. They are expected to report this week if by then the Ad Hoc Committee isn’t dissolved.
The committee was chaired by Gbarpolu County District #2 Representative Kanie Wesso and co-chaired by Bong County District #5 Representative Edward Karfiah. Others were Representatives Dickson Seboe of District #16, in Montserrado County; Jeremiah Koung of District #1, Nimba County; Dr. Isaac Roland of District #3, Maryland County; Clarence Gahr of District #5, Margibi County; and Rustonlyn S. Dennis of District #4, Montserrado County.
The establishment of the Ad Hoc Committee followed a communication of the Bill of Impeachment from Representatives Thomas Fallah and Acarous Gray.