PUL Former Leadership Accepts Court Ruling -Terms Team Kanubah’s Allegations “Self-Serving”

By Anthony Q. Jiffan, Jr.


MONROVIA – The former leadership of the Press Union of Liberia has responded to the ruling of the 9th Judicial Circuit Court in Gbarnga, Bong County on the electoral crisis that had long plagued the Press Union of Liberia.

The response was contained in a press statement issued in Monrovia on Monday, July 1, 2024, by former PUL president Charles B. Coffey, Jr. on behalf of the former PUL leadership and other key committees of the Union.

The former PUL leadership included Charles Coffey, Daniel Nyankonah, Musa Kenneh and Akoi Baysah whose tenure ended in 2022.

On behalf of the former officials, Coffey clarified that the latest ruling by the 9th Judicial Circuit Court followed the resignation of former PUL vice President Daniel Nyakonah, Jr., and the reversal of Justice Joseph Nagbe’s decision to uphold a bill of information filed by the respondents in the case, Julius K. Kanubah VS Press Union of Liberia former leadership, membership, Congress, and election committees.

According to Coffey, Team Kanubah had accused the Press Union of Liberia former leadership, membership, Congress, and Election Committees of failing to publish the voters’ roll, an allegation he said the committees dismissed as a tactic to destabilize the Union for what he termed as “self-serving purpose.”

The former PUL President indicated that the aforementioned committees had invited Kanubah and his team to a meeting to resolve the voter’s roll issue, but that Kanubah decided to launch a campaign to tarnish the Union’s reputation through unsubstantiated accusations.

Coffey noted that despite the contentious ruling, the former leadership does not wish to pursue further legal action.

“We strongly believe pursuing this action further is not worth our time and effort, after all we have put into the Union, including enough time and resources,” the statement noted. “We did what we could at the time considering the prevailing circumstances.”

He continued: “Our Union has endured challenges from those who believe they are best suited to lead it. As we have done before, we will overcome these challenges. We will remain committed members of the Press Union of Liberia—some of us from a distance, others by actively participating in debates about the Union’s future.”

The former PUL President pointed out that their stance on the president ruling of the court is crucial in putting the entire elections saga to rest, noting it is their collective hope that we can move beyond past grievances and focus on the vital role that the media plays in our democratic society in the interest of the Country.

Said Mr. Coffey his team has decided to work with all stakeholders to ensure that such issues do not arise in the future, and that the integrity of the fourth estate is maintained at all times.

He however acknowledged the Court’s ruling as a summary judgment granting team Kanubah what it has prayed.

“Our decision of disengaging the legal process was a result of a mediation process by former leaders of the PUL, the process brought together all concerned parties including team Kanubah,” Coffey added.

He further reflected that during the exercise, it was agreed that “we end the PUL election crisis out of Court Settlement. As a result, and in the interest of the Union, we respected the process and lawyers of both parties were to sign a resolution aimed at withdrawing the case from the Court”.

Coffey asserted that while the mediation process was progressing, to their dismay, team Kanubah decided to continue the legal process, adding that the Kaunbah team did not win on merit, and that the Coffey Team also have the right to seek redress at the Supreme Court.

“So, we did not willfully, intentionally and recklessly abandon the case as being speculated in some quarters of our society,” he said.

The former leader of the PUL, who paid the sum three hundred United States as a fined imposed on the respondents, asserted that two other contenders in the PUL election process also declined to continue the process in the interest of fostering media solidarity and peace in the Union.

“Because of our quest for a united PUL and for a new election to be held, we have paid the Court fine thus bringing us under its Jurisdiction,” he emphasized.

“We have disagreements on some issues contained in the Court’s ruling, but we let it to go for the sake of the Union,” he said, contending that justice, reconciliation, peace and unity will serve as the perfect recipe in fostering the dreams, vision and aspirations of the founding fathers of the PUL.

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