Kabineh Ja’neh Defeats GOL Again -As ECOWAS Court dismisses objection

For the second time in about six months, The ECOWAS Community Court of Justice sitting on Friday June 4, 2021 in Abuja, Nigeria, reaffirmed the legal victory of Cllr. Kabineh Muhammad Ja’neh, former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia, when she dismissed the Applications filed by the Government of Liberia before the court in February of this year challenging the ruling rendered in favor of Cllr. Ja’neh.

In the application, the Liberian government had requested the court to review its November 10, 2020 judgment it handed down in which the government lost the case.

It can be recalled that in the wake of his impeachment from the Supreme Court Bench, Cllr. Ja’ineh sought a legal remedy to reverse the decision and seek compensation. The Court granted his requested and in the landmark judgment of November 10, 2020, “The ECOWAS Court of Justice also ordered the Republic of Liberia, to restore, calculate and pay to the Applicant all his withheld entitlements, including salaries, allowances, and pensions benefits as from the date of his impeachment to the date of notification of the Court’s judgment”

Part of the judgment, copy of which is in possession of The Analyst, the Court also ordered government “to reinstate the Applicant (Kabineh Muhammad Ja’neh) as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court; or, in the alternative, to grant the Applicant (Kabineh Muhammad Ja’neh) the right to retire from service on the date of this notification with full pensions benefits as if he had retired at the normal retirement age of the Supreme Court (of Liberia).”

The judgment also, against the claim of $25 million dollar for damages by Cllr Ja’neh, the Court instead directed the payment of $200,000.00 to him for what the Court termed as “reparation for moral prejudice suffered for violation of his rights.”

The ECOWAS Community Court gave the Liberian Government a period of six (6) month to fully comply with the November 10, 2020 Judgment.

But in a move to counter the ruling, the Government of Liberia on February 1, 2021 filed two applications, one requesting the Court to review her judgment, stressing that the judgment “violates the legislative sovereignty of the Republic of Liberia”.

In the second count, the Government  argued that the declaration made by Court that the impeachment was a “violation of the Applicant’s (Justice Ja’neh’s) right to due process” was a gross oversight; hence the Court by holding as such committed “a serious palpable error.”

However in the second round of Judgment, the Court dismissed the application for Judgment Review in its entirety for lacking legal merits. According to reports from the Headquarters of the Court in Abuja, it also denied the Government’s request that the Chief Justice, Edward Amoako Asante recuses himself from sitting in any and all matters coming before the ECOWAS Court in which the Republic of Liberia is a party, citing reasons of being bias and partial, which the court said was factually and legally groundless.

Meanwhile, the ECOWAS Community Court last Friday morning ordered the Liberian Government to fully comply with the Judgment of the Court without any delay.

Speaking to reporters after the Court’s Judgment, Counsellor Kabineh Ja’neh said “the law is the law and no political maneuvering by the Weah Government will change this incontestable fact.” Counsellor Ja’neh also noted that he has been informed by a number of “High Ups” that the Government will remain resolute in its defiance of the Regional Court’s Ruling. Asked what action he will pursue in that instance, Counsellor Ja’neh intimated that there are adequate legal remedies to deal with matters of defiance of the ECOWAS Court’s Ruling. According to Counsellor Ja’neh, these include the seeking of imposition of sanctions on a disobeying member country of ECOWAS by an aggrieved party.

He however hopes “we will not travel that route”.

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