Liberia: Lawmaker Wants Critical Review of Supreme Court Justice’s Impeachment Bill
Monrovia – Representative Jonathan Fonati Koffa (CDC-District #2 Grand Kru County), Chairman on the Judiciary Committee, who was not included on House Speaker Bhofal Chambers’ ad hoc committee set up by to look at the impeachment proceeding brought by Representatives Acarous Gary and Thomas Fallah, feared that House of Representatives could be heading into procedural error.
Report by Henry Karmo, [email protected]
In an interview with FrontPage Africa Wednesday, July 18, the Grand Kru District #2 lawmaker said, every impeachment proceeding has to be accompanied by procedures if the process is to be done legally.
“The first thing we need to do is to set up procedures for impeachment which we don’t have. Nobody can be impeached without the procedure, without rules of impeachment that’s what the Constitution says. This is not 4G and there is no restraint on lawmakers from raising issues of impeachment.”
Petition Not a CDC Thing
Senator Koffa in response to claims about the impeachment bill being influenced based on party line said, “I am not going to look at an impeachment bill in terms of politics. I will look at it in terms of the law and the evidence. If pieces of evidence are produced in the petition showing that a justice is guilty of items listed in the petition, I will vote for it but if it is, on the contrary, I will not vote for it.”
“Remember an impeachment is an indictment so all impeachments are charges. There are some constitutional standards we will look at in that respect. It is normal and customary that there wouldn’t be ad hoc committees. In fact ,impeachment proceedings should be sent to the Committee on Judiciary but plenary in its wisdom as part of a motion, decided to send the impeachment bill to an ad hoc committee.”
Rep. Koffa told journalists that the removal of a justice, the Speaker, the President is not something to take lightly especially the procedural involved is legal proceeding and he being a lawyer, he will look at it very critically.
In Speaker Chambers’ wisdom, when he named the ad hoc committee members to look at the Impeachment Bill presented to the House by two members of the House of Representatives, he deliberately chose to ignore the inclusion of Cllr. Koffa, who is the Chairman on Judiciary.
However, Cllr. Koffa promised to advice and forward recommendations to the ad hoc committee.
“The Judiciary Committee is not involved but let me tell you what will happen. Within five weeks the Committee will be able to do what they have to do and those against will have what they have to do and those for will do what they have to do. We think this process should be slow and deliberate because it involves a highly constitutional charged matter. It involves the reputation of an individual,” he advised.