Cllr. Jonathan Massaquoi Defends of the Liberia National Bar Association Expulsion of Cllr. Nwabudike
Monrovia – The expulsion of Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission boss Cllr. Ndubusi Nwadubike from the Liberia National Bar Association has been receiving mixed reactions among many legal practitioners in the country.
The LNBA claimed its decision to expel Cllr. Nwadubike was consistent with Article II Section IX of its rules.
It provides that, “Any member may, after inquiry, be disciplined by means of suspension or expulsion from membership of the Association for proven gross misconduct in his relations to the Association or in his professional undertaking upon two thirds votes of membership of the National Executive Council.”
A day after the expulsion, a member of the Bar Cllr. Arthur Johnson rejected the decision, referring to it as unlawful and erroneous.
Cllr. Johnson contends that it is the Supreme Court that has the power to expel lawyers and not the LNBA.
But Johnson’s assertion has been refuted by Cllr. Jonathan Massaquoi, who heads the International Law Group.
Cllr. Massaquoi, on June 25, told FrontPageAfrica’s judicial reporter that the LNBA had committed no error in its decision against the LACC boss as being misconstrued in some quarters.
“As an integrity institution, the LNBA took the decision to safeguard its integrity as Nwadubike crossed the redline,” said Cllr. Massaquoi.
After the expulsion of Nwabudike, what the LNBA leadership needs to do is to communicate with the Supreme Court about its decision, he added.
He argued that LNBA only expelled the LACC boss from the Bar but did not revoke his license because the decision to revoke any lawyer’s license lies in the purview of the Supreme Court.
To show that the Supreme Court recognizes the decision of the Bar lawyers coming to practice before that body are told to be in good standing with the Bar – meaning that the high court had shared its function with that institution, said Cllr. Massaquoi.
In the wake of reports that Nwadubike has filed a Writ of Prohibition to the Supreme Court against the decision of the LNBA to expel him, Cllr. Massaquoi added that there should be an alternative writ than prohibition because prohibition is filled to undo an unlawful act but LNBA act was not unlawful.
According to Cllr. Massaquoi, the Bar decision against Nwadubike is not final it requires Judicial review, which can be done at the level of the Supreme Court.