Liberia: Court Puts Hold on All NPP Activities
Report by Lennart Dodoo, [email protected]
Monrovia – The National Patriotic Party (NPP) a member party of the governing Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) would not be able to function as a full-fledged party due to a notice of preliminary injunction issued by the Civil Law Court at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia.
The NPP, Liberia People’s Democratic Party (LPDP) and the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) joined forces in 2016 for the purpose of winning the 2017 presidential election. The NPP produced the vice standard-bearer, Jewel Howard-Taylor, while the CDC produced the standard bearer, George Manneh Weah.
The NPP has in recent days been engulfed in leadership crisis emanating from the refusal of the party’s chairman, James Biney, to reinstate members who left to contest the 2017 presidential and legislative election on the ticket of other parties back to their respective positions they held in the party.
The standard-bearer of the party, Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor, had instructed the reinstatement of former party members, but Chairman Biney who refused to embrace the prodigal sons claimed it is illegal for the standard bearer to make such a decision. He said the decision was unilateral and does not conform with the party’s constitution.
“It is important that we let Madam Taylor know that the document which she convened her meeting to introduce as the NPP constitution is not recognized by the current leadership and we will not abide by it. The official constitution of the party remains the April 6, 2004 constitution,” he said.
Biney averred that those who Madam Taylor claimed to have reinstated at her meeting cannot be made to occupy any position in the party under the NPP constitution until they reapply for membership and then contest for any position at the party’s national convention.
The affected ‘partisans’ have sought redress through the courts.
The Civil Law Court in Monrovia on May 19, 2018 issued a preliminary injunction on all activities of the party based on a complaint filed by Bolton Dennis, a former executive of the NPP.
The court ordered absolute restrain from occupying, accessing, using, operating from or removing any material connected with the offices of the NPP.
The NPP’s national chairman and the secretariat have also been ordered not to make any representation in respect of the subject position of secretary general or any of the positions which individuals are said to be reinstated to.
The NEC has therefore been restricted by the court from recognizing, adopting or giving effect to any new instrument in the form of party constitution.
Former Bong County Representative, George Mulbah, a founding member of the NPP who recently made a comeback to the party, on Monday posted to his Facebook page that the NPP in a meeting held Sunday under the gavel of the standard bearer among many other decisions, turned over a vote of no confidence petition against Biney to the grievance committee for investigation.