Of the 29 Senators left in the Liberian Senate, nine say they will not vote to impeach Associate Justice Kabineh M. Ja’neh.The Liberian Senate is composed of 30 senators from the 15 counties here, but the death of Montserrado County Sen. Geraldine Doe – Sheriff has shortened the number to 29.
Justice Ja’neh has been on trial following accusations by lawmakers that he blocked government access to a road fund, and used his influence as Associate Justice to secure a ruling in his favor at the Supreme Court to take possession of a land being claimed by 94-year-old Madam Annie Yancy Constance, among other charges.
But he denies all the accusations.
The nine abstaining Senators who on Thursday documented their opposition to the impeachment of Justice Ja’neh have termed the process “unconstitutional.”
Those familiar with the impeachment say Justice Ja’neh needs about 11 of the 29 Senators on his side to be saved from being impeached.
River Gee County Sen. Commany B. Wesseh says the anti – impeachment Senators are already 10 persons, and they need just one more Senator to vote in favor of Justice Ja’neh so that he cannot be removed illegally and unconstitutionally from the Supreme Court Bench.
The Senators under the banner: “Senators for Justice in the Associate Justice Kabineh M. Ja’neh Impeachment Trial” say they have resolved not to support the impeachment trial.
The anti – impeachment Senators include Oscar A. Cooper, (Margibi County); Nyonblee K. Lawrence, (Grand Bassa County); Comany B. Wesseh, (River Gee County); Armah Z. Jallah, (Gbarpolu County) and Sando D. Johnson, (Bomi County).
The rest of the anti – impeachment Senators are Dr. Henrique Togba, (Bong County); Daniel F. Naatehn, Sr., (Gbarpolu County); Stephen H. Zargo, (Lofa County) and J. Gble -bo Brown, (Maryland County).
The nine Senators contend that the impeachment was negatively influenced by the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights, Claims and Petitions Cllr. H. Varney G. Sherman of Grand Cape Mount County.
They therefore call on Sen. Sherman to resign from the chairmanship of the Senate committee to save the Senate from further embarrassment.
Reading the statement for the senators opposing Justice Ja’neh’s impeachment, Sen. Daniel Naatehn Sr., of Gbarpolu County cites relevant articles of the constitution that are being violated.
He cites Article 29, which he says defines the Legislature as the branch of Liberian government consisting of two houses.According to him, this provision require that the both houses of the Legislature must pass on all legislation, claiming that it was violated.
The group of Senators also say Articles 43, 71, 73 and 21(a) were violated as well.
The nine Senators are calling on the other senators to vote against the impeachment, terming it as unconstitutional.
They argue that none of the articles in the Constitution has cited in their statement has been proven against Justice Ja’neh to warrant his impeachment.
According to the nine Senators, they will not vote, saying they support halting the illegal and unconstitutional impeachment trial.
-abstain from impeachment
By Ethel A. Tweh –Edited by Winston W. Parley