Bility Hitched Again

By: R. Joyclyn Wea

MONROVIA-It seems as though Musa Hassan Bility is gradually falling prey to his grand political finale, as he has again been defeated, at the level of Criminal Court “A.”

The Presiding Judge of that Court, Judge Roosevelt Willie has overturned Magistrate Jorma Jallah’s February 11, 2022 ruling in which he (Jallah) granted a motion to dismiss an allegation of altering Liberty Party’s Constitution by Musa Hassan Bility and Martine Kollah, Chairman and Secretary General of the party respectively.

On February 3, 2022, Musa Bility and Martin Kollah, Chairman and Secretary General of Liberty Party (LP) were dragged before the Monrovia City Court by three members of LP, primarily Romeo Corker for allegedly altering the party’s constitution for their selfish aim.

A writ of arrest was issued out of that court on the two party officials to have them appeared and answered to the crimes: forgery, criminal conspiracy and criminal facilitation levied against them.

It was alleged that during the period January 2021, the named defendants deceived the membership and partisans of the Liberty Party, conspired criminally and altered the constitution of the party after its convention in Gbarnga and submitted same to the National Elections Commission without an authorization; a violation of section 15.70 and section 10.2, 10.3 of the New Penal Law of Liberia.

Subsequently, on February 11, 2022, Magistrate Jallah ruled that, although the Republic of Liberia, meaning the state is the prosecutor in every criminal case, but the Republic of Liberia can only become a party and obviously a victim of a crime charged when arrest warrant is issued, the defendant arrested, and brought under the jurisdiction of the court and the trial commences.

It is based on this lack of legal standing or capacity of the parties to include the state that Magistrate Jallah dismissed the charges against the defendants relying on section 10.6(b) and 16.7 of the criminal procedural law of Liberia and the Supreme Court un-coded opinion, titled, Concerned Sector Youth verse LISGIS, et al decided 2010.

Judge Willie says, Magistrate Jallah was wrong to have granted said motion thereby reversing that decision, but withhold mandating Magistrate Jallah from resuming jurisdiction over the matter as doing so, would amount to reviewing the judgement of the high court.

“While the ruling of Magistrate Jallah granting the motion to dismiss the case for lack of standing or capacity is an error, and requires to be reversed so that this court can mandate the Magistrate to resume jurisdiction of the case, and conduct a full trial on the merit of the case, the court says, such mandate will not be given to the Magistrate Court, as doing so, is tantamount to reviewing the judgment of the honorable Supreme Court which is in violation of Article 65 of the 1986 Constitution of Liberia,” judge Willie mentioned.

Judge Willie further explains that “Article 65 of the 1986 Liberian Constitution is the final arbiter of, moreover, and although this mandate was not directed to judges, magistrates, the law provides for us to take judicial notice and act accordingly; we also say that the contesting parties that went before the justice in Chambers, did not take any appeal to the full bench of the Supreme Court and have begun to implement the mandate of the justice in Chambers.”

Meanwhile, he had ordered, Magistrate Jallah to stay all further proceedings in this case.


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