Liberia: House's Witness 'Contradicts'

14 March 2019

The testimony of the House of Representatives' third witness testimony in the ongoing impeachment trial of Associate Justice Kabineh M. Ja'neh has provided series of statements that apparently contradicted previous witnesses' testimonies.

Madam Annine Constance, who testified particularly on one of the four counts regarding her property that Justice Ja'neh allegedly used his power to acquire illegally, almost disagreed with all the critical issues in the testimonies of the two previous witnesses, Representatives Acracus M. Gray and Kannie Wesso.

Madam Constance, 94, who was brought in the chambers of the Liberian Senate by lawyers representing the House of Representatives, took the witness stance and told the hearing that she and her late husband, Mr. Constance, Sr. legitimatized their son, Constance, Jr. in 1960 as the authorized administrator of the land in question.

Constance Jr., who was legitimatized as the authorized administrator of his parents' land at the age of four, sold the land to Associate Justice Ja'neh when he was 40 years old.

Madam Constance's testimony is in sharp contradiction to Representatives Gray and Wesso previous testimonies that the old lady was not aware of Constance Jr. legitimization.

"I cannot say I am not aware; I am aware. That two of us gave him the land--we were even happy when we did that," Madam Constance said.

Representatives Gray and Wesso in their separate testimonies told the hearing that Constance Jr. was not the biological son of Madam Constance, and that he Constance, Jr. was born out of wedlock, but Madam Constance disagreed, saying Constance Jr. is her biological son.

Contrary to such information that Constance, Jr. was not her son, the 94 year old who was cross-examined by lawyers representing Justice Ja'neh said Constance, Jr. is in fact her third son.

"He is not my first, he is not my second, he is my third child," Madam Constance said.

Our reporter said Madam Constance who appeared that she was not aware of the reason she was brought to the hearing said she has never gone to court for the land in question, but only went to the Supreme Court to see Justice Ja'neh, but she was not given attention.

According to our reporter, this testimony is also in contradiction to the House of Representatives lawyers' argument that the land case went to court.

Our reporter who is closely following the trial said surprisingly, Madam Constance told the hearing that it was Justice Ja'neh who took her to court because she has never gone to court, and that she does not even know the Associate Justice if she sees him.

Relaxed in one of the comfortable chairs in the Senate's Chambers, Madam Constance said except Representative Gray who she complained to for the purchase of the land by Justice Ja'neh, no delegation from the House of Representatives ever visited her, contrary to the House lawyers' that they visited the old lady during their investigation.

Our reporter said Madam Constance in answering a question from Senators Prince Johnson and Henry Yallah as to who was in possession of the deed when the land was sold; she said she was not in the country when the land was sold.

Also when asked by Senator Prince Johnson as to whether she Madam can blame Justice Ja'neh, or her son, Constance, Jr., the seller of the land, the old lady answered by saying "I blame the buyer because how I will be living then you buy my land from my son."

Our reporter further said Madam Constance was thereafter discharged by Chief Justice Francis Korkpor.

Lawyers representing Justice Ja'neh have maintained that the House of Representatives' lawyers have not proved any of the charges levied against their client, and pleaded with the senators to vote against the impeachment bill.

Cllr. Arthur Johnson, one of Ja'neh's lawyers said the impeachment trial against the Associate Justice was political.

However, the House of Representatives' lawyers said they have proved beyond all reasonable doubt the charges against the Justice Ja'neh.

They said the fact that they have produced witnesses both oral and documentary evidence in the trial showed that there are facts for the removal from office of Justice Ja'neh who has since been impeached.

Cllr. Ja'neh, one of the Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of Liberia is facing impeachment trial for four counts of allegation levied against him by the House of Representatives, through two of its members, M. Acarous Gray and Thomas P. Fallah, Representatives of Montserrado County Districts number 8 and 9 respectively.

These allegations include stopping of the Road Fund payment, illegal acquisition of the House of Representatives' records, Abuse of power and use of power against a citizens.

The trial resumes on Monday, March 18, 2019 at 10:00 am.

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: NEWS

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 150 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.