Court Lifts Injunction in NTAL Case US$50K; Bond Denied
Monrovia – The Civil Law Court at the Temple of Justice has lifted a writ of injunction on the National Teachers Association of Liberia, following a US$50,000 bond filed by the embattled former President of the body, Rev. Ellen Fartu Varfley, challenging her impeachment by members of the teaching body.
The court took the decision on grounds that the NTAL had filed a guarantee bond value at US$150,000 as ordered by the Civil Law Court during its Sixth Judicial Circuit Sitting which was deemed sufficient to all parties.
On the 18th of April 2016, Rev. Ellen Fatu Varfley filed a petition for Declaratory Judgment, alleging that she was impeached by the Representative Council of the National Teachers Association of Liberia without due process.
Rev. Varfley argued that her impeachment is aimed at denying her from conducting the administrative functions on behalf of the National Teachers Association of Liberia as well as depriving her from having access to the entity’ s various bank accounts.
On the other hand the NTAL noted that Rev. Varfley impeachment was legal, thus prompting the association through its Representative Council to unanimously endorse the Vice President for Gender Affairs, Mary W. Mulbah, in April 2016 as the Acting President pending its 2017 convention as provided in Article VI section 3 paragraph 2 of its constitution.
“Moreover, the movant maintained that prior to the petitioners’ impeachment, she presided over two separate meetings of the representative council during which two of the council members were impeached through similar procedure.”
“Since the conduct of that transaction and subsequent impeachment and removal of the Rev. Ellen Fatu G. Varfley as President of the NTAL, which action was followed by the court’s restraining order; no further transaction has taken place under the authority of the Representative Council not even Mary Mulbah nor the secretariat”.
But Rev. Varfley has argued that the bank account be frozen because her impeachment is geared towards depleting the accounts of the National Teachers’ Association of Liberia, terming the group’s decision as illegal.
“The Respondent did not challenge indemnity bond of the Movant or National Teachers Association of Liberia.
Her Indemnity Bond filed by the association is valid. It is the ruling in court that the Motion to vacate as prayed for by the Movants be and it is granted and the preliminary injunction as filed by the respondent is hereby lifted, a court document stated.”
According to the document signed by Assigned Circuit Court Judge Peter W. Gbenewelleh, the clerk of the court should ensure that the public be aware of the lifting of the injunction filed against the National Teachers Association of Liberia.
The NTAL had argued that the injunction be lifted to enable the Association carry out its operations and functions, paying staff and adequately defending members while carrying out its functions in accordance with the rules of the body.
Speaking with FrontPage Africa on Monday, the acting President of the National Teachers Association of Liberia, Mary Mulbah, described the lifting of the injunction as an enabling move for the organization to carry out its operation freely on the national and international level.
“We have access now to journalists because we were restricted from speaking to the press as well as carrying out administrative functions for one month while the injunction was placed on us,” said Madam Mulbah.
She also registered that Rev. Ellen Fatu Varfley, the ousted President of the National Teachers’ Association of Liberia, will no longer form a part of the group since the impeachment decision has not only overturned her authority but also limited the trust built in her over the years.
Meanwhile, the National Teachers’ Association of Liberia, through its Acting President, Mary Mulbah has reiterated the organization stance against the Public Private Partnership introduced by the Ministry of Education.
The move, according to her, is not appropriate and in the best interest of the general teaching populace, but a tactic to create joblessness for some public school teachers who have been working tirelessly over the years.
Willie N. Tokpah – [email protected]