Home Politics Musa Bility’s Election: “Our Biggest Mistake” -Senator Karnga-Lawrence Admits Big Political Blunder

Musa Bility’s Election: “Our Biggest Mistake” -Senator Karnga-Lawrence Admits Big Political Blunder

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By: H. Richard Fallah

MONROVIA: The embattled Political Leader of the opposition Liberty Party (LP), Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence, has admitted that the election of Mr. Musa Hassan Bility to the position of LP National Chairman is “one of the biggest mistakes” the Liberty Party has ever made.

“We submit that indeed, a mistake that makes you humble is better than an achievement that makes you arrogant,” Senator Karnga-Lawrence told a surging crowd of LP partisans and sympathizers in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, when she reacted to the recent ruling of the Supreme Court of Liberia relative to the prolonged leadership wrangling in the LP.

Senator Lawrence: “We have been through so much unwarranted misunderstanding, confusion and chaos. We have had sleepless nights as a team strategizing, blaming one another at some point, and even shutting down for days to reflect.”
The Grand Bassa Senator: “Our executives, partisans, well-wishers, supporters, families and friends have gone through so much political trauma and pains for a decision we thought would have been best for our institution; As the Leader of our beloved party, I stand here today, humbled, and sad and want to say sorry; sorry for putting you all through all this trauma, frustration and sleepless nights. I take all the responsibility.”

However, Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence has described the recent ruling by the Supreme Court of Liberia relative to the Liberty Party (LP’s) internal wrangling as “recipe for chaos and disturbances,” especially in a Country that she said, needs to focus its attention on good governance and peace- building.
Addressing several LP partisans on Saturday, April 15, 2023, at the County Headquarters of the party in Buchanan City, Grand Bassa County, she assured supporters that she and her team will not abandon the legal battle, promising that their next legal action will be announced on Tuesday, April 18, 2023.

The LP Political leader revealed that the over two years fight in the Liberty Party is not against only them, but the entire Country; and it is not just about Musa Bility and his team fighting; but every other power against the national growth of the country.

The Senator said she and her team are being fought because she (Sen. Karnga-Lawrence) leads the base that will influence the 2023 Presidential and Legislative elections in Liberia.

Senator Lawrence: “We have a team and base that do not compromise, we have a team and base that have integrity, and we have a team and base that will never take money against the future of our people, we have a team and base that mean well for Liberia.”

“All these against people who will never think beyond themselves and have compromised the survival of this Country out of greed, and only us, with you behind us, can stop that,” she pointed out.
She also pointed out that the recent ruling by the Supreme Court relative to the Liberty Party is troubling news for Liberia.
“My fellow partisans and Liberians in Liberia and all over the world, we are very concerned about how to effect change in such a system for the redemption of this Country even more than how to find a logical conclusion to the Liberty Party’s matter,” she maintained.

According to the Grand Bassa Lawmaker, in other to make Liberia better, they cannot fall in the trap of delay-tactics that are intended to keep their focus away from the October 10, 2023 elections.

“We are grateful, honored and thankful that even in the midst of all these distractions, we remain in control of the party base which is the second largest opposition constituency in Liberian politics,” she declared.
The Senator assured that she and her team are ready to get up and get energized and position themselves to collaborate with the political institution that will make the decisions that are in line with the values and beliefs that they continue to stand for and redeem Liberia.
The “Lioness” as she is affectionately called by her admirers, boasted that her team (Liberty party) remains the influencer in the 2023 presidential and legislative elections.
She promised to, in few days, roll up their sleeves and use their political capital and all resources available to decide who the next president to rescue this Country becomes.
“The wellbeing of our people matters to us,” Senator Lawrence said.

The Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday, April 12, that the NEC lacks the power and authority to investigate the complaints relating to tampering with and/or altering LP’s legal instrument(s), or make declarations regarding its legality as in this case, the LP’s Constitution.

An appeal originated from the ruling of Supreme Court Associate Justice, Yusu D. Kaba, when he served as Chambers Justice during the October A.D. 2022 Term of the High Court.

Justice Kaba delivered an exhaustive ruling in favor of petitioner, Karnga-Lawrence and Emmanuel Azango, for which an alternative a writ of certiorari was filed by Mr. Musa Bility, Martin F. Kolah, et al. of the Liberty Party as complaints against the NEC, Senator Nyonblee Karnga Lawrence, Emmanuel Azango, et al., as defendants, which the Court was called upon to review, dissect, and make its final determination.
The certified records show that on October 3, 2022, Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence and Emmanuel Azango filed a complaint against the NEC and Musa Hassan Bility and others.
The National Elections Commission (NEC) contended the objections to the alleged “unwarranted actions of the Bility and the NEC and their persistent partial and biased conduct and the complicity of the NEC in fueling irregularities and confusion which aided and abetted Bility of illegally conducting the affairs of the Liberty Party outside the legal framework of the Party.
The aggrieved contended in their complaint that on the 20th day of September 2022, NEC through its Chairperson, Madam Davidetta Browne Lansanah, communicated with Mr. Bility in which she referred to him (Mr. Bility) as the Chairman of the Collaborating Political Party (CPP), and that before this communication, the Political Leader of the Liberty Party, Madam Karnga Lawrence, had earlier written to the NEC disassociating the Liberty Party from any further engagement with the CPP given the circumstances surrounding the Liberty Party’s internal conflict that the NEC has become and/or made itself a party.

The complainants also contended that Section 5.5 of NEC’s Rules and Regulation, captioned False statement to the Commission, provides that “it shall be a violation of these Regulations and Guidelines for any Political party, COALITION, Alliance Aspirant, Candidate, or others acting on behalf of a political party, aspirant or candidate to submit false information
The complainants also contended that Section 5.5 of NEC’s Rules and Regulations, captioned “False statement to the Commission”, provides that “it shall be a violation of these Regulations and Guidelines for any Political party, coalition, Alliance Aspirant, Candidate, or others acting on behalf of a political party, aspirant or candidate to submit false information or statement to the Commission”. According to their complaint, the NEC was also obligated to vet, check, verify, and compel any political party submitting any document to NEC to verify it before accepting the document or denial of said document.
The aggrieved contended that the provisions of the NEC’s laws were deliberately ignored and set aside by the NEC for the sole purpose of aiding and abetting Bility’s illegal conduct to impose himself on the Liberty Party as its chairman.
According to them, the conduct by the NEC and Musa Bility violated the NEC’s statutory duties and responsibilities, as Mr. Bility cannot by himself commit the Liberty Party to any compact and/or alliance in the absence of the Liberty Party’s leadership.
They maintained that the substance of its complaint included, but was not limited to, the series of specific and general unlawful and illegal conduct by which the NEC and Bility separately, jointly, and collectively threatened the continued existence of the Liberty Party and put into total disarray and distinction the smooth operation and function of the Liberty Party.
Under the authority granted to the Political Leader under the 2015 Constitution of the Liberty Party, she convened and presided over a Special Convention held in Gbarnga, Bong County on January 23, 2021.
After the adjournment of this Special Convention, Partisan Emmanuel Azango filed a complaint to the Political Leader and Chairman of the Special Convention, contending that the entire electoral process was poked and riddled by constitutional violation and procedure breaches, citing V, VI, and XII of the 2015 Liberty Party Constitution, under which the convention was held.
Accordingly, Senator Lawrence and Azango filed a complaint to the NEC hearing officer, citing their contention, and having listened to both parties in the LP crisis, the Hearing Officer ruled in favor of Bility, which spurred Senator Lawrence and Azango to pursued redress at the NEC Board of Commissioners.
The Board of Commissioners ruled that the hearing officer did not err and ordered the hearing officer to proceed with the hearing and determine the case on its merit.
Being dissatisfied with the Board of Commissioners ruling, the aggrieved, Senator Karnga-Lawrene, and Azango, then filed a five-count petition for a Writ of Certiorari with the Justice in Chambers Yusuf Kaba, as contained in their motion to dismiss.
Justice Kaba nevertheless ruled, granting the Writ of Certiorari and ordered the Clerk of the Court to send a mandate to the NEC to resume jurisdiction over the case and enforce the ruling, but this was halted by a subsequent petition for a writ of Prohibition filed by Bility.
On the other hand, Bility and others sought an appeal to the Supreme Court as the Final Arbiter of Justice in the country.
Having reviewed the records, listened to oral arguments, and considered the law, the Supreme Court on Wednesday, April 12, 2023, ruled that, according to the court record, a challenge to the LP’s constitution ought to have been made in a court of competent jurisdiction to determine the certainty surrounding that document.
Based on the court record, it appears that the Liberty Party’s challenge to its constitution should have been made in a court of competent jurisdiction. The National Elections Commission (NEC) can only rely on non-appealable decisions in a court of competent jurisdiction. The appellants failed to appeal the decision, and the doctrine of res judicata will bar re-litigation of the same issue before the same NEC.
The court found that the certified records before it revealed that the appellants filed a new complaint before the hearing officers of the NEC, raising the same issue of fraud and irregular submission of the LP’s amended Constitution. The hearing officers denied the motion to dismiss and ordered the case to proceed with its merits. The Board of Commissioners confirmed and affirmed the hearing officers’ ruling and ordered them to proceed with the hearing of the case on its merits.
The Justice in Chambers raised several issues and ruled in favor of the appellees, including the doctrine of res judicata.

The court record indicated that the exchange of letters between the commission and the parties is not the exercise of a quasi-judicial function of the commission. Therefore, the court’s function is to correct substantial errors of law committed by a judicial or quasi-judicial tribunal.

As a result, the Supreme Court has ordered its Clerk to send a mandate to the NEC to resume jurisdiction and proceed in keeping with its judgment.

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