Key witness contradicts lawmakers
94-year-old Annie Constance, whose land case is one of the counts for the impeachment of Associate Justice Kabineh M. Ja’neh, sharply contradicts claims by lawmakers that they visited her home to make inquiry into the property case prior to initiating the impeachment trial against Justice Ja’neh.
Madam Constance explains before the impeachment hearing at the Liberian Senate that nobody went to her [to make inquiry].
“Nobody from the House of Representatives or the Liberian Senate went to visit me; only my Representative Acarous Gray. I tell my representative thanks for bringing my case here,” she says in tears.
Her testimony Tuesday, 12 March clearly contradicts the Impeachment Manager from the House of Representatives’ second witness, Cllr. Kanie Wesso, who chaired the House’s committee that investigated the allegations levied against Justice Ja’neh.
Cllr. Wesso testified on Friday, 8 March that the committee reached Madam Annie Constance to get her side of the story.
According to him, after the House Committee’s work, the Senate should have given Justice Ja’neh due process by summoning him for questioning.
Associate Justice Ja’neh has been accused by lawmakers of abuse of power, using his influence as Associate Justice to secure ruling in his favor in a property case involving a private citizen, Madam Annie Yancy Constance at the Supreme Court to take possession of her land.
One of the Justices on the Supreme Court Bench that signed the ruling which favored Justice Ja’neh in the land case, Chief Justice Francis S. Korkpor, Sr. is the presiding officer in the ongoing impeachment trial.
Madam Constance blames the buyer of the property, Justice Ja’neh , rather than her son Nyema Constance, Jr., who sold it to the accused.
Her argument is that her son did not own the property, saying the documents to the property had her late husband’s name on them. She says this means that the property is hers.
Following her testimony, Justice Ja’neh’s lawyer Cllr. Arthur T. Johnson filed a motion before Chief Justice Korkpor for a judgment for acquittal in favor of his client.
Cllr. Johnson says the Impeachment Managers brought the woman and told her to cry to gain sentiments from the Liberian Senate.
He says the woman is not even in the know of why she appeared before the Senate, arguing that it was due to this reason that she kept begging that she should be given back her property.
But Chief Justice Korkpor denies the motion for judgment for acquittal.
He instead rules that Justice Ja’neh will take the stand in his own defense on Monday, [18 March] at 10 AM in the Chambers of the Liberian Senate.
Earlier on Tuesday, Madam Constance noted her land was sold by her son Constance without her knowledge, arguing that she can’t be alive and someone buys land from her son.
During the time of the transaction between her son and Justice Ja’neh, witness Constance says she was a refugee in different country, but she left her documents in Liberia.
Upon her return to Liberia, she adds that she didn’t bother to check on her documents because her son was sick.
According to Madam Constance, the man who sold the land to Justice Ja’neh Mr. Constance, Jr. is her biological son.
She testifies that she and her late husband J. Nyema Constance, Sr. legitimized her son at the age of four in 1960.
Madam Constance testifies that in December 2018, armed police went to put her out of her house, allegedly on orders of Justice Ja’neh.
She explains that she has never been to court before, but she was always represented by her daughter- in- law.
The witness tells the hearing that whenever her daughter-in-law returned from court, there was no good news.
According to her, she decided to meet Justice Ja’neh at his office, but he allegedly acted like he didn’t even see her.
Witness Constance narrates further that she decided to talk to her [district#8] Representative Acarous Gray to help her to get back her property.
The 94 years old witness broke in tears, appealing to the Liberian Senate and the people of Liberia to help her to get her property back.
She discloses that Representative Gray had expressed willingness to restitute Justice Ja’neh’s money that was used to buy the land, but the accused allegedly refused.
By Ethel A. Tweh –Edited by Winston W. Parley