LIBERIA: Indicted Associate Justice Ja’neh Denies Charges Against Him
Associate Justice Kabineh Ja’neh has argued against all charges levied against him in the ongoing impeachment trial, stating that the charges do not constitute sufficient legal basis to warrant his impeachment.
The embattled Associate Justice said at the trial before the Liberian Senate on Monday that theft of property charge levied against him by his accusers, is a crime under the law and as such an accused judicial officer must not only be charge but convicted in the court of law, adding that such was not done in his case.
Ja’neh said he was not called for any investigation relative to the allegation of theft of public record, regarding minutes from the House of Representatives, as claimed by his accusers.
”When I heard that the House of Representatives was proceeding to initiate impeachment proceedings against me to take from me the privilege of serving as associate justice, I sought intervention from the Supreme Court by seeking the issuance of writ of prohibition, but that does not still constitute an impeachable offense,” Ja’neh said.
In the case involving the road fund, Ja’neh explained that when Srimex and two other oil and gas companies filed a petition of prohibition against the Government of Liberia for the road fund tax in 2017, during the March Term of Court, the Justice-in-Chambers convened a conference with the parties and determined that major constitutional questions were raised.
He added that the Justice ordered the issuance of a writ putting a halt to the collection of the road fund until the matter was disposed of by the Republic, and the writ, he said, was issued in August by the Justice-in-Chambers.
Ja’neh disclosed that when he took charge of the case as presiding judge in February 2018, he then ordered that the matter be sent to the full bench of the Supreme Court, and the court, according to him, entertained arguments where all parties were represented.
He also argued that it was the government who then withdrew the case with the intention of finding alternative out of court settlement.
He wondered how then is it an impeachable offense against him?
The Associate Justice also denied using his judicial office to wrongfully claim a property as has been alleged by his accusers.
Meanwhile, further argument into the impeachment proceedings is expected to resume on Tuesday, March 19.