3 Suspended Journalists Want Due Process

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Three suspended sports journalists have rejected claims of misconduct by the Press Union of Liberia and published in news stories in the print and electronic media.

In a joint press statement yesterday in Monrovia Richard Manuba, Molley Trojan Kiazolu and Ms. Sally Gaye, also members of the Sports Writers Association of Liberia (SWAL), said the president of the PUL, Abdulai Kamara does not have the power to suspend them.

They said Mr. Kamara violated Article 29 of the PUL Constitution which states that “A member…must have been complained to the Grievance and Ethics Committee, investigated…and the findings of the investigation filed to the Executive Committee…” which will then make its recommendations, in the face of ethics transgressed.

“With the PUL president grossly violating the Constitution of the Union [Article 29], which should have been a guiding principle with his action, we are giving Mr. Kamara five days to withdraw his press release circulated to some newspapers and radio stations, impugning our hard-earned character,” they noted.

They added, “If the (5 days) elapse and he has not withdrawn his unilateral decision against us, we will take legal action against him…”

“It may be recalled that the leadership reported vice president Jallah E. Grayfield to the Grievance and Ethics Committee to be investigated on allegations of presenting a bogus ‘Educator of the Year’ award to school proprietor David C.B Barshell in 2014. Due process must be exercised in all suspension allegations of the Press Union of Liberia,” the release quoted the three journalists.

They meanwhile vowed to use all available and appropriate means to respond to the harm to their reputation.

The PUL on January 13 suspended the membership of Mr. Manuba, Mr. Kiazolu and Ms. Gaye as a result of an unruly conduct which disrupted normal working activities at the Union’s headquarters, the PUL said in a release.

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