By: Frank P. Martin
MONROVIA: Following a Petition for Summary Proceedings to recover possession of Real Property filed before the Civil Law Court by Worjoloh McClain Enterprise on February 23, 2023, against Unity Party (UP), the former ruling party has escaped an eviction and Writ of arrest from the Civil Law Court for its political leader, Joseph Nyuma Boakai and other top officials by filing Writ of Prohibition before the Supreme Court of Liberia.
The UP filed before the Justice in Chamber at Supreme Court of Liberia, His Honor, Yermie Quiqui Gbeisay Sr., a petition for a Writ of Prohibition against Civil Law Court Judge Kennedy Peabody and the Worjoloh McClain Enterprise.
Acting on the Petition for a Writ of Prohibition by the Unity Party, Justice Gbeisay issued a Writ citing Judge Kennedy Peabody and the petitioners to a conference on Monday, July 10, at the precise hour of 10:00 AM.
Justice Gbeisay also ordered Judge Peabody to stay further action against the former ruling Unity Party (UP), until the conference is held and a determination is made on the merit or demerit of the petition on the 10 of July, 2023.
The Standard Bearer of the Unity Party, Joseph N. Boakai, along with the party’s Chairman, Co-Chairman, Secretary General, Legal Counsels, and Chairman on steering committee had earlier risked being arrested and sentenced to jail at the Monrovia Central Prison following their alleged failure to meet court’s Monday, July 3 deadline to pay rent to the Worjoloh McClain Enterprise.
This followed the Worjoloh McClain Enterprise legal team’s motion to recover real property against the Unity Party, Chairman and all those in authority, on February 23, 2021.
The Court ruled on November 23, 2021, holding Unity Party liable and ordered the Sheriff of the Court to evict Unity Party, and that the UP should pay an arrear rent of $US180,000.00 and $u$20,000.000 for wrongfully withholding said property.
The Petitioner was placed in possession of the subject property and the key of said property was turned over to the Petitioner.
The Petitioner then prayed the Court for the issuance of the Writ of Execution for the payment of SUS200, 000.00 as a result, the Respondent Unity Party, filed a Petition for payment on June 14, 2022.
The Presiding Judge, Nancy Finda Sammy, told the UP to pay 25% of the amount within a week as of the 16 day of August 2022.
Again, based on the failure of the Respondent, Unity Party, to live up to the mandate from the Court, another ruling made on August 16 2022, a second ruling was made on October 19, 2022 by Her Hon. Nancy Finda Sammy.
Portion of that ruling states that ” (Respondent Unity Party) is hereby mandated to pay the sum of US$100,3/5.00 representing 50% of the judgment amount on or before October 31, 2022, as well as the total sum of US$500.00 representing costs of Court.
Therefore, the balance 50% of the judgment amount of $US100,375,00 should be paid on or before December 15, 2022.
“Failure of the Respondent to make these payments in KEEPING WITH THEIR OWN REQUEST shall leave this Court with no other alternative but to proceed with the execution in order for Respondent to satisfy said judgment,” the court said.
As a result of the failure of Respondent to honor the ruling of Her Hon. Judge Nancy Finda Sammy, the Petitioner filed a Bill of Information on the 3rd day of May 2023, informing the Court that Respondent has failed, refused and neglected to pay the 50% of the judgment amount as mandated by Her Hon. Judge Nance Finda Sammy.
And, according to the Court, it is from the Bill of Information the ruling was made on May19, 2023, mandating the Respondent to pay the judgment amount on the 20% day of June 2023 failure which all of the Executives of Respondent shall be held in contempt.
Judge J. Kennedy Peabody, Resident Circuit Judge of the 6th Judicial Circuit Civil Law Court of Montserrado County, presenting his comedown verdict, said the ruling having been made on May 19, 2023, the Respondent again filed an application for payment on June 8, 2023 and paid the amount of $US50, 000.00 as 25% of the amount, and requested the Court to pays the balance in four (4) equal installments.
The Court says, since the judgment holding Respondent liable was made on the 23″ of November 2021 up to and including the filing of the Bill of Information by Petitioner on May 3, 2023, there is no showing that Respondent, Unity Party, has made any effort to comply with the judgment made by the Court.
Contrarily, the court said, Respondent filed two difference stipulation payments which Respondent refused, failed, and neglected to honor as a result for which Judge Sammy ruled in the last installment payment request that if Respondent failed to honor the stipulation of paying the 50% of the judgment amount on the 31″ day of October 2022 the court will be left with no other alternative but to enforce the judgment of November 23, A. D. 2021.
Judge Peabody said, it is from this background that, the Court ruled on May 16, 2023, mandating and ordering Respondent to pay the full judgment amount on or before the 10 day of June 2023 or Respondent could be held in contempt for such failure.
The Court further said the May 16, 2023 ruling is still in effect because Respondent has defaulted on its own stipulation submitted before the Court on several occasions.
Therefore, the court overruled and denied the stipulation payment request made by Respondent Unity Party.
Judge Peabody ruled: “The Respondent Unity Party is nearby giver again up to and including the 3rd day of July 2023 same being on Monday to satisfy the full judgment amount.
The Court therefore ordered the Sheriff of the Court, failure to comply with the ruling, to arrest the living bodies of the Unity Party’s executives and legal counsels, to satisfy the judgment amount.
Unity Party was represented by its Legal Committee including Cllr. Ebenizar Z. Gibson and Cllr. Bushuben M. Keita, while the respondent was represented by the Law offices of Dunbar & Dunbar with Cllr. Stephen B. Dunbar, along with Law offices of Sayeh & Sayeh with Cllr. G. Wiefueh Alfred Sayeh.