Simple Logic and the Law: Why Hasn’t the “Superior” Court Held Chambers And His Rebels In Contempt? (Part II)

3
894
Seen here is 90-year-old Annie Yancy Constance, as a young miss. At this stage, she is the splitting image of an estranged daughter she has not seen in years.

By Attorney Keith Neville Asumuyaya Best 

TO RECAP: We began PART 1 of this series with the question above, hoping that the answer would slap us in the face. It didn’t! So we tried to go about it another way: “Where in the world had such chutzpah, (gall, nerve, balls) been found, that together, dashed the Supreme Court Justices enough girth, (areas around their waists, stomachs and backs) it left them a little higher than the other two competing branches of government.

Who could have guessed that our Justices would today find themselves practically at sea, following their election to do a volte face, (an about face, backpedal) into a ‘superior’ court-fumble, as a viable way forward out of the current ‘writ of prohibition’ wrangle?

It was that boost that allowed the Bench to reach out, bridging the gulf to another world that lay between them and the House of Representatives. That bridge allowed them to take on a bunch of legislative rebels from one of the other two branches, putting them where they belonged: in their place.   (NOW READ ON!)

How had they arrived at this juncture? The Supreme Court Justices–we have to presume, must have simply freaked out over the word: ‘supreme.’ Hadn’t they always been enamored, (charmed by, in love with) that word? Now they could take it one step higher. The British had been right, they told themselves: the supreme court had — in that (early tradition – started off, technically, (scientifically, practically) as a ‘superior court.’

‘Superior’ Court

“One of their better minds, it seems, soon came up with a brilliant idea: that the Judiciary had been the best—and the strongest player amongst the three branches. Again, that’s the way the Justices’ thinking seemed to have been running.

The Founding-Fathers might have fooled the Liberian nation. The Judiciary, to begin with, then, should have been the First Branch of Government; Let the other two Branches make the laws; it would be the Judiciary interpreting and deciding which laws would hold, and which ones would not.

Thinking this way must have turned their heads, edging them onto a pedestal of their own making:  a pedestal that ‘juked’ (cajoled, flattered) them into reconsidering themselves with exaggerated (over-blown) self-regard.

Something else was happening at the same time: all personal imperfections — that each Justice may have been nurturing, or laboring under — simply faded out of existence for now; only to return later, to haunt them.

With a dose of chutzpah, they had “built a bridge too far,” only to find out — a bit too late — as Julius Caesar had discovered in 49 B.C: that to “cross the Rubicon,” meant to embark on an undertaking from which one cannot turn back! (Rubicon: a small river in northern Italy.) Caesar’s crossing it with his army, represented an illegal entry into Italy and thereby initiated civil war!

“Crossing the Rubicon”

“We wanted no ‘Superior’ Court, like what the British once had, Liberia’s Founding Fathers had hinted without hesitation, almost two centuries before. Had they still been alive a few months ago, they would have declined a Liberian ‘Superior’ Court, again, this second time around.

Liberia’s Founding Fathers understood only too well, that the British had been forced to keep adjusting, (fine-tuning, fiddling) with the numerous, (many) changing judicial options the British had no choice but to switch to from one tryout to the other, given the major social and political challenges involved with moving from a Monarchy to something less autocratic. That had been simply to make sure that power-sharing remained manageable, (simple, easy to handle).

And that was eons, (ages) ago. Though, the British Empire is no more, Great Britain persists, (endures, continues) today, and thrives. Would that be reason enough for Britain to want to revert, (go back to the old ways she had given up? No!  So, what part of this re-invented, newly-minted, improved, Liberian ‘Superior’ Court, do our Justices find appealing in this day and age?

A Rock and a Hard-Place

Today, the Judiciary finds itself between the proverbial “rock and a hard place, in connection with designs and steps by some members of the legislature who want to see Associate Justice Kabineh Ja’neh removed from the Supreme Court. Something appeared screwed up a good while back—long before activity on both sides of the controversy began stalling, (slowing down, getting stuck). Some finger-pointing has been going on for some time as well. All of it has to do with the Law, though no side involved is going to admit to being on the wrong side.

(Once again, for the benefit of our readers) Prohibition is “a writ directed to the judge, and parties of a suit in any inferior court, commanding them to cease from the prosecution thereof upon a surmise either that the cause originally or some collateral matter arising therein does not belong to that jurisdiction, but to the cognizance of some other court.

Also, it may be used to restrain an official from doing an administrative ministerial or legislative act not falling within his province. So to whom does the public turn, when the prohibition police, (meaning, the Supreme Court) proceeds to act ultra vires, outside the scope of their responsibilities?

This document shows the 1960 birth date recorded in a court-document, that defies logic. Why, because the creation and legalization of the procedure is predicated on Letters of Administration that the court-/document claims were issued to a child who was only four years old when said Letters were issued him in 1960 — four year after his birth in 1956, as can be seen — here.

Authors

3 COMMENTS

  1. A VERY SWEET Liberian precious jewel and Angel like this should be deprived of her liegal and legintimate property because nature has taken its course in terms of her physicality, and because judges of Liberian Supreme Court are able to abuse their powers through “proved misconduct, gross breach of duty! Well, she may be old in the eyes of man but in the eyes of her creator ,she is still his loving child!

    And if God never abandons his children to even the grave, it is aboundantly clear as letters of fire written in the skies that he will never abondon 90-year-old Annie Yancy Constance!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    FOR HE THUNDERFORTH IN THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH “IS MY WORD NOT LIKE HAMMER AND LIKE FIRE THAT SMASHES THE ROCKS INTO PIECES??” HE GOES ON ELSEWHERE IN THE HOLY WRIT AND THUNDERS: BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. The letter posted above, with visibility only on the three points prayed for by the Petitioning Father and Mother, is simply a petition establishing filiation of the child born to the couple. Similar to going to a family court in the U.S., where one parent or both parents would file a paternity suit to establish paternity. And it’s prudent to do such a thing if either the child was born out of wedlock, and most hospitals would not put the father name on the birth certificate. As such either parent or both would need to establish paternity in family court. I am making a legal guess here as I am not privy to the detail of the case related to the above document, and I’m relying on the fact that this was held at a Court of Equity. So, it was more of providing a remedy rather than awarding monetary or something of monetary value. That’s why I think it was more about establishing a kind of Will that would allow the son to inherit the parents’ properties should both the parents become deceased. The document itself does not say when the son could inherit the property and neither am I aware, from the public readings of articles on the case, that one parent in a marital relation could arbitrarily waive the other parent’s right of ownership over properties owned by either one of them while they are married, upon the death of either one of them. So, the death of the father does not automatically award the property to the son in the filiation document, that could pass as a Will of the father. If his father’s wife, whether she’s his mother or stepmother, would be the rightful heir to the property, if she’s alive. It’s possible the father inheritance clause in the petition as a will that would legally allow this son with the primary responsibility of taking care of his mother upon the father’s death, as opposed to other siblings. It’s most likely he was the oldest child or son, given him that responsibility. Absence that intent, I don’t see though, how this document in any way grant the son the right to inherit the property of the parents solely upon the death of the father, absence the mother’s right as spouse legally entitled to her late husbands properties, absence any Will that include the consent of the wife/mother. The court would have legally ruled with prejudice to allow full inheritance by to the late son based on the above document, if both parents were deceased at the time of the transaction with the court accused judge, and there’s nothing in the above document that states the Father wanted the son to inherit this now sold property, upon only the father’s death in the absence of his mother’s death or consent. As married couple, the wife would certainly be a natural inheritor of the property held by her late husband, and her consent would have been required by any court relying on approving the sale of said property by the son. The Court should have ascertain beyond a reasonable doubt that the mother was not alive before certifying the son’s exercise of his right to inherit and transact the property for his benefit. Furthermore, from a conduct perspective, the fact that one of the Justices was a party to the transaction, and a judge hearing the petition, this created the appearance of impropriety and self interest. Government officials who entrusted with positions of public trust have implied obligations to function in a manner as not to create the appearance of undermining the integrity of the public trust they hold. This also apply to individuals who hold officers in public corporations who actions could be reasonably interpreted by others and thus create reputational risks to the institutions they represent. In this case, the Judiciary Branch of the government.

    I write this to suggest that there is a high bar that the Senate would need to consider in the trial part of this impeachment. I had already commented on the legal as well as the political considerations and implications of the case and will dispense with addressing it here.

    From what would be relevant from the trial perspective, I am more concern about what the accused Justice did outside of the hearings or outside of his official role as a sitting judge to influence the lawyers of the lady to not proceed with the case, including if he knowingly ignored facts he was privy to or ought to have been privy to about Ms. Yancy being alive, with the intent on creating a false sense that she was not alive, so as to legitimize the transaction where he had a direct economic interest. That would be, in my opinion, an impeachable offense, if proven (note: if proven).

    Again, the real judges will be the voters. if they feel that the members of the Legislature did not perform their roles with the highest integrity and respect for the institutions they are privilege to serve in, voters have the responsibility to ask themselves if they would want to send these elected officials back to the Legislature or not. But, it’s time that compliance with the constitutional statutes take a hold in the mindset of the electorate and elected and appointed officials, regardless of what sentiments and emotionalism one feels about a situation. The outcome will always bring about the peace and civil order everyone quests for.

  3. The letter posted above, with visibility only on the three points prayed for by the Petitioning Father and Mother, and is simply a petition establishing filiation of the child born to the couple. This is similar to going to a family court in the U.S., where one parent or both parents would file a paternity suit to establish paternity. And it’s prudent to do such a thing if either the child was born out of wedlock, where most hospitals would not put the father name on the birth certificate. As such either parent or both would need to establish paternity in family court. I am making a legal guess here as I am not privy to the detail of the case related to the above document, and I’m relying on the fact that this was held at a Court of Equity. So, it was more of providing a remedy rather than awarding monetary or something of monetary value. That’s why I think it was more about establishing a kind of Will that would allow the son to inherit the parents’ properties should both the parents become deceased. The document itself does not say when the son could inherit the property and neither am I aware, from the public readings of articles on the case, that one parent in a marital relation could arbitrarily waive the other parent’s right of ownership over properties owned by either one of them while they are married, upon the death of either one of them. So, the death of the father does not automatically award the property to the son in the filiation document that could pass as a Will of the father. His father’s wife, whether she’s his natural mother or stepmother, would be the rightful heir to the property, if she’s alive. It’s possible the father inheritance clause in the petition as a will that would legally allow this son with the primary responsibility of taking care of his mother upon the father’s death, as opposed to other siblings. It’s most likely he was the oldest child or son, given him that responsibility. Absence that intent, I don’t see though, how this document in any way grant the son the right to inherit the property of the parents solely upon the death of the father, absence the mother’s right as spouse legally entitled to her late husband’s properties, absence any Will that include the consent of the wife/mother. The court would have legally ruled with prejudice to allow full inheritance by to the late son based on the above document, if both parents were deceased at the time of the transaction with the court accused judge, and there’s nothing in the above document that states the Father wanted the son to inherit this now sold property, upon only the father’s death in the absence of his mother’s death or consent. As married couple, the wife would certainly be a natural inheritor of the property held by her late husband, and her consent would have been required by any court relying on approving the sale of said property by the son. The Court should have ascertain beyond a reasonable doubt that the mother was not alive before certifying the son’s exercise of his right to inherit and transact the property for his benefit. Furthermore, from a conduct perspective, the fact that one of the Justices was a party to the transaction, and a judge hearing the petition, this created the appearance of impropriety and self-interest. Government officials who entrusted with positions of public trust have implied obligations to function in a manner as not to create the appearance of undermining the integrity of the public trust they hold. This also apply to individuals who hold officers in public corporations who actions could be reasonably interpreted by others and thus create reputational risks to the institutions they represent. In this case, the Judiciary Branch of the government.

    I write this to suggest that there is a high bar that the Senate would need to consider in the trial part of this impeachment. I had already commented on the legal as well as the political considerations and implications of the case and will dispense with addressing it here.

    From what would be relevant from the trial perspective, I am more concern about what the accused Justice did outside of the hearings or outside of his official role as a sitting judge to influence the lawyers of the lady to not proceed with the case, including if he knowingly ignored facts he was privy to or ought to have been privy to about Ms. Yancy being alive, with the intent on creating a false sense that she was not alive, so as to legitimize the transaction where he had a direct economic interest. That would be, in my opinion, an impeachable offense, if proven (note: if proven).

    Again, the real judges will be the voters. if they feel that the members of the Legislature did not perform their roles with the highest integrity and respect for the institutions they are privilege to serve in, voters have the responsibility to ask themselves if they would want to send these elected officials back to the Legislature or not. But, it’s time that compliance with the constitutional statutes take a hold in the mindset of the electorate and elected and appointed officials, regardless of what sentiments and emotionalism one feels about a situation. The outcome will always bring about the peace and civil order everyone quests for.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here