‘Supreme Court Approved My Liberian Citizenship’

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Augustine Ndubusi Nwabudike

– Augustine Ndubuisi Nwabudike comes in defense of his citizenship, files petitioned before Civil Law Court to declare his citizenship

Since Cllr. Augustine Ndubuisi Nwabudike’s citizenship came into public debate leading to President George Weah’s withdrawal of his nomination as chairman of the National Elections Commission (NEC), the Nigerian born lawyer is using the  Supreme Court of Liberia as one of his witnesses for testimonies concerning his Liberian nationality.

Cllr. Nwabudike’s decision to use the Supreme Court is contained in a Petition of Declaratory Judgment filed on  Tuesday, April 7, just a day after the Criminal Court ‘B’ that is responsible for issuance of Liberian citizenship to foreign nationals denied issuing him (Nwabudike) a certificate of naturalization.

The Criminal Court, through its Clerk, Ben George Teah, declared: “This is to certify that after a careful perusal of the records of this Honorable Court on the herein above-named person, Augustine Ndubuisi Nwabudike, regarding his naturalization of May 1982, we have not found any document up to the issuance of this certificate.

“In furtherance of our check, we communicated with the Liberian Immigration Service (LIS) and they replied that after a thorough search of their records, they have not found any information on the aforesaid individual regarding his legal resident status or naturalization,” Teah said in a clerk’s certificate issued to Cllr. Finley Karngar.

But in his petition, Cllr. Nwabudike argued that following his practice of law as Attorney for three consecutive years at the Local Bar for Montserrado County, which is a part of the Liberian National Bar Association (LNBA), he applied and was admitted to the Supreme Court Bar as Counselor-At-Law.

The LNBA is the umbrella and self-regulating body of all lawyers in the country and its membership is limited to Liberians who are graduates of any recognized law school in Liberia or abroad, including the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law. Such persons must have sat and passed the National Bar Exam and, thereafter, been qualified and admitted to practice law in Liberia, which Nwabudike’s membership is now seriously challenged due to his questionable citizenship.

According to the Bar, Chapter 17.1 of the Judiciary Law restricts the practice of law in Liberia to only Liberian citizens, of which Nwabudike’s citizenship is being seriously questioned by some Senators including Senator Darius Dillon of Montserrado County.

Nwabudike further claimed that: “This is copy of the certificate of admission to the Supreme Court Bar to form a cogent part hereof in the substantiation of my case,” Nwabudike argued.

Nwabudike further argued that while practicing as a counselor of the Supreme Court Bar, he was appointed to serve as chairman of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) following his confirmation by the very Senate that is questioning his citizenship to serve the Liberian government in the capacity of the National Elections Commission chairmanship.

With that confirmation, Nwabudike claimed that he was associated with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) in prosecuting the economic sabotage case that involves former Defense Minister Browine Samukai and others.

Nwabudike further argued that until the court makes the declaration about his citizenship to help clear the doubt on the minds of people about him, he stands to suffer continuous violation of his right as a “Liberian citizen.”

Therefore, Nwabudike’s petition argues that: “This court is requested to declare my right as a Liberian citizen to enable me to benefit all rights and privileges associated with the status of citizenship.”

Nwabudike also said that he attended the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law at the University of Liberia (UL) and earned an LLB Degree in Law. Following completion of his study at the Law School, he was admitted to the Montserrado County Bar as an Attorney-At-Law to practice law in the country.

During his confirmation hearing, Nwabudike informed the Senators that he was born in 1964 and subsequently obtained his citizenship in 1982, meaning that he was 17 years old when he applied for his naturalization and subsequently obtained his citizenship from Criminal Court ‘B.’

Nwabudike also informed the Senators that during his application process, the court required of him to bring parental consent and an adult to take the oath since he was minor.

“When I had my declaration of intents, I was a minor and because of that, I was required to bring a parental consent and an adult to stand to take the oath behind me. In this jurisdiction, our law requires that if a minor wants to get married, it requires parental consent. My argument here is that the court has set a precedent that when a minor wants to make a decision or a position of an adult, parental consent is required, and it can be granted under the law when it is done in the presence of a qualified adult,” Cllr. Ndubusi Nwabudike said.

However, the Senators argued on the basis of the Alien and Naturalization Law, which provides that: “No person shall file a petition for naturalization unless he shall have attained the age of twenty-one years.”

That was contrary to Nwabudike’s contention that he was 17 years old when he filed and appeared before Criminal Court ‘B” for the process leading to his naturalization and subsequently obtaining his citizenship.

27 COMMENTS

  1. Nwabudikeś argument is invincible! EXCEPTIONS AND PRECEDENTS are fundamental and bulldozing principles and standards of law and justice! The Supreme Court is the final arbiter vis a vis the judicial process in the Republic of Liberia!

    Those hypocrites, and political haters of the mighty CDC, and xynophobic ignoramuses, within the Senate, and the LNBA, have simply displayed their obvious ignorance, hatred, cowardice, and senselessness.

    We hope Senator J. Milton Teahjay and his so called Committee had done their homework and not been blinded and emotionally confused by the silly expectations of some quarters of the public, and those hypocrites, and opportunists, within the Senate.

  2. Whatsoever takes place in the darkness is bound to come out at some point in life. There is a smoking gun about our president and the Nigeria connection that has just begun pouring out and it is very nasty as nasty can be. The free ride to lies of Mr. Nwabudike’s bus ended this time at the NEC conformation hearing after bulldozing his way of 2 top positions in the CDC led administration and taking advantage of the president lack of leadership scales in the presidency of our republic. Mr. Nwabudike’s situation is very embarrassing to every Liberian because he was able to lied all these years, educated himself at the expense of Liberian tax payers, frauded the nation highest court, our Supreme Court to gained admission to the LNBA which just exposed the level of corruption in our way of life. This man should have never got to this point if our authorities had done their home work long time ago.

    Let me say this to Kou Gontee and others that see this differently about Mr. Nwabudike’s being rejected by the Liberian senate. Just between you and myself Kou, I supposed you are from Nimba and I am from lofa despite we are both Liberian. Tell me honestly if you will ever vote to elect me as senator for Nimba county? Be very honest about this and put politics aside. Yes, I can work in Nimba despite I am from lofa but there are certain position in Nimba that I can not occupied and that’s the fact of life. This is totally accepted & adaptable to our way of life in Liberia. We need to put Liberia first and that brand to start with must be Liberians. We are talking about someone that will spearhead our NEC which some how relates to our national securities if there is a crisis in any giving elections in Liberia.

    I think Mr Nwabudike’s still dreaming and refusing to accept the reality of his entire fraudulent way of life in Liberia. My guess is, the Supreme Court will definitely uphold the decision of the lower court to saved all the embarrassment relating to Mr. Nwabudike’s journey to becoming Liberian. The president was rewarding Mr. Nwabudike’s for his contribution made to CDC that brought president George Weah to power. The dust of the entire connection is pouring out on social media which is very nasty,if the president in fact was involved in the 419 against the Russian. Stayed tune and the facts are bubbling and ready to burst.

  3. This article is clear enough my people. It says:
    “Cllr. Nwabudike’s decision to use the Supreme Court is contained in a Petition of Declaratory Judgment filed on Tuesday, April 7, just a day after the Criminal Court ‘B’ that is responsible for issuance of Liberian citizenship to foreign nationals denied issuing him (Nwabudike) a certificate of naturalization.”

    I hope the mighty CDC can concentrate on protecting our people and allow political politics to take a break.
    Governments around the world depend on their own human capital at 90% to undertake major development projects, ours depends on foreigners at 90% to bring us the moon they promised. Mighty CDC! Wow!

  4. Joe Akoi, if the great Gola people of Bomi County could vote to power Edwin Snow a Bassa boy from Grand Bassa County as their Representative, you better believe it that we the great and very powerful people of our county Nimba County can vote for Joseph Akoi of Lofa County as our legislator for your county Nimba County.

    Joe, as for your “guess that the Supreme Court will definitely uphold the decision of the lower court to” bla bla bla, we must remind you of the monument at the apex of the Temple of Justice housing the Supreme Court. That monument makes abundantly and radiantly clear that “JUSTICE IS BLIND”! Meaning, neither the law nor justice discriminates; hence the Almighty Supreme Court shall reverse the decision of that lower court which is in error.

  5. “Exceptions and precedence” are fundamental and bulldozing principles… If the Senate did not do due diligence one time does that automatically prevent them from doing it next time because there’s precedence for that? Law should be about righting wrongs. Sorry that some people think it’s a CDC thing.

    • Clarence Townsend, the issue here IS NOT about “If the Senate did not do due diligence one time”, NOR is the issue about why the Senate confirmed the very nominee previously without raising its now contention about citizenship as you are premising here.

      The issue here is whether the senate has the powers to make decisions violative and contrary to set precedence of the Supreme Court; precedence , which ipso facto it being emanated from the Supreme Court, becomes law?

      And the answer IS A BIG NO! For neither laws nor precedents are amended, abandoned, or repealed, via such mob mentality, and unconstitutional manner.

      Of course, if even some legislators, and some members of the LNBA are blind to CERTAIN doctrines of the judicial process, and the separation of powers principles, and worse of all taken amok by sentiments and political flippancy, laymen as you cannot be expected to see the avoidable error of that senate committee, or the supreme invincibility of Nwabudikeś argument.

    • Joe Moses, but so says the great legal erudite Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. that “The life of the law has not been logic: it has been experience.” Law, strictly stated, are usually one of three varieties: statutes enacted by legislatures, rules and regulations of administrators of the executive branches, and results of court cases, called “decisions” or “opinions”. Accordingly, there are overlaps because COURT CASES MAY INTERPRET, UPHOLD, OR STRIKE DOWN STATUTES OR RULES AND REGULATIONS.

      Hence, as my sister Kou Gontee admonishes us, Augustine Ndubuisi Nwabudikeś position or argument is right; and the action, and decision of the lower court, respectively are wrong!

      That is, given the jurisprudential fact that a decision or decisions (precedents) of the Supreme Court may automatically, ipso facto, its given decision or approval on a certain matter (as the case of Nwabudikeś then before it), MAY INTERPRET, UPHOLD, OR STRIKE DOWN STATUTES OR RULES AND REGULATIONS.

    • Witherspoon,

      Kou Gontee is quite correct. Justice is indeed blind. But let us also be reminded that what is not done legally is not done at all

      • Joe Moses, in an intellectual exchange, one must elaborate or explicate, so that he or she receives the appropriate response. Please elaborate or explicate what according to you in this matter may have “not been done legally; hence was not done at all.” WHAT WAS NOT DONE LEGALLY?

  6. My dear Kou! Thank you for honestly answering my question and I can count on your vote when that day comes. I can also assure you that, the great people of Nimba will not copy or footstepts into what the folks of Bomi has done. Good for the people of Bomi considering your example but I can not see this happening anytime soon in Nimba county. Thank you so much for your exchange of views.

  7. “I ask because I want to know what I don’t know”. There’s no one to ask but you.

    It’s been said several times that the former chairman of the NEC, Mr. Kokorya is not a Liberian. Does anyone know where Korkoya was born?

    Thanks for taking your precious time to respond.

    Peace

  8. Witherspoon

    Sorry, was a bit busy. To your question. The gentleman admitted that he was age 17 years when he filed for, and attained his Liberian citizenship. Yet the law is claiming that one has to be 21 years old to be able to do that.

    Granted, he filed for and attained his citizenship at age 17, as he claimed he did, a thorough search of the records cannot produced any such evidence that he did. And no, the records are not missing, they are intact. Records from 1982 to 81, 80, 79 and going down are there.

    He was asked to produce his certificate of naturalization, he wouldn’t or couldn’t. Instead, he produced a faded copy that, one does not have to be an expert on forgery to see that it was doctored.

    I refer you to sub chapter a,b, and c (check to make sure) of the Alien and Naturalization law.

    That, to me, is the issue at bar.

    Hope you and your family stay safe while we defeat this pandemic

    Peace

    • Joe Moses, all such hypotheses as “Instead, he produced a faded copy (as if any document is faded-proof), And no, the records are not missing, they are intact, one does not have to be an expert on forgery to see that it was doctored”, ARE ABSOLUTELY IMMATERIAL!

      And on top of that, ipso facto the recognition, ratification, approval, holding, interpretation, and precedent, of the Supreme Court, mere frivolous HYPOTHESIS and lackadaisical, HEARSAYS are useless and irrelevant VIS A VIS THE JURISDICTION OF THE SUPREME COURT!

      For of course, “faded originals” (if this is even the case), or very important documentations not found even in national archives is not uncommon.

      So Joe Moses, your hypothesis about: “what is not done legally is not done at all”, CANNOT:

      (1) be attributed to Cllr. Nwabudike or the Supreme Court, but rather,

      (2) be imputable to that Senate Committee and ESPECIALLY THAT LOWER COURT whose decision is,

      (3) doomed for reversal, since of course in matters of such nature and character, THE RECORD OF THE SUPREME COURT AUTOMATICALLY OVERRIDES AND PREVAILS!

  9. Comrade Hney,

    Let me propose my answer to your question of the citizenship of Korkoya.

    On paper or from passport, it may be written that he’s an American or British or Australian or any nationality, by naturalization or by birth.
    But as an indigenous Liberian who agrees with the ideal of “once a Liberian, always a Liberian”, I will NEVER call a Korkoya (natural Liberian name) a foreigner in Liberia.
    However, if for any reason/s he had claimed the citizenship of a powerful country, he may not occupy some positions for which the constitution forbids. But as long as he pledges allegiance to the flag of Liberia, I would appoint him to any strategic position in Liberia if I were the president of Liberia, then appoint a conflictual or dubious naturalized Nwabudike (natural Nigerian name).

    I wish you a Happy Easter!

  10. Well Comrade Dolo,
    Happy Easter to you and your family!

    Please note, nothing in the world should stop you from being the president of the Republic of Liberia. Above, you’re being hypothetical. But let’s get serious. If the spirit grooves and moves you, I’d say run for the presidency. You have nothing to lose young guy.

    If? No! When? Yes!
    So let’s say, when you become president, (please not the ANC) maybe I stand a chance to redeem Liberia from its headaches, or maybe “some” of its headaches!

    The truth:
    The issue of nationality is one of the reasons I was unable to get a job last year in Liberia. I did not have the connections, otherwise there would have been some kind of arm-twisting. It’s a shame.

    Thanks for the Korkoya response.

    • Thanks also, Joe Moses. Henceforth, I prefer you to indeed refer to me as am: Matilda Witherspoon, or Mrs. Matilda Witherspoon, and not just Witherspoon which could be any male or anyone.

  11. Thanks for the condescending”layman” label. As I understand it the senators’ position is not to overturn any Supreme Court rulings, but to say the decisions were based on misinformation. The court which has jurisdiction in these matters has no record supporting the counselor’s claims of naturalization. The counselor himself has nothing to prove his naturalization claims-with or without parental permission.
    Our system of jurisprudence is based on the US system.”PrevedPrec” did not prevent the Supreme Court from upholding the legality of the 1964 Voting Rights act after successive supreme Court rulings upholding the legality of Jim Crow laws. It did not prevent the Supreme Court from its Roe vs Wade decision even though successive supreme Court rulings had upheld the total ban on abortion. Even that may be changed again due to the makeup of the court.
    Finally, these are matters on which reasonable people can disagree. Why words such as”haters of the mighty CDC” or “xenophobic” or “ignoramuses” or “hypocrites” when we have a different view? What happened to civility in public discourse?
    Thanks for taking the time to read this “layman’s” view. Hope you have a great Easter, and please stay safe.

    • Madam Witherspoon

      Didn’t mean any offense by referring to you by your last name. From now onwards it is madam Witherspoon.

      The police and others are taking this state of emergency in the wrong direction. My parents and I sitting on our front porch at about 3 30pm, two policemen walked up to us and say we violating the president mandateby being outdoors. We need to be indoors or suffer the consequences.

      Wrong direction.

      Madam Witherspoon, hope the Easter Sunday went well. Stay safe

      Peace

  12. Hi guys, you are all considered as bookworms because of the exchanges you brought forward to the issue about the Cllr. I believe this is probably the best interlectural exchanges in recent times in Liberia free of insults. Thanks, Morris Fahnbulleh

  13. morris fahnbulleh

    Thank you, but I dont consider myself bookworm, and I am sure I also speak for my Uncle Hney when I say he does not consider himself as such. We just having frank exchange amongst ourselves because of the collective love for our Country and the problems that she is encountering.

    Please, be a part of this exchange. I am sure we will benefit from your immense contributions .

    Hope your easter sunday went well. I trust that your family is also doing well

    Peace

    • I like your signature… Peace. This is what I stand for and have been advocating in my own weak ways. Yes, I agree with you that you are not a bookworm. No one says to himself “I am” but is pointed at.
      I want to reserve any further comment on the Nwanbudiki drama until the SC comes up with a position. I call it a drama because all along in the Law School, we knew him as a Liberian. The very year I entered the Law School, he served as chair of the election commission. Some of us were not please and wanted to challenge his role but clarification was provided and the cloud was evaded and rains settle down. therefore, if anything proves the contrary, it will really be a drama.

  14. now you the bookworm, Brother Morris. Law School, you not small man. At least I know who to go to when I ever have case that i need adjudicated.

    So, this Nwanbudiki drama was even at the Law School during your tenure. Wow. wonders upon wonders.

    I hope that I can get to know you better, Sir. I run an NGO where we train young leaders and I am sure that we can benefit from someone such as yourself. Just thinking out loud

    Peace

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