Senator Wins Dead Fiancée Case, But…
Civil Law Court Judge Boima Kontoe Thursday ruled that River Cess County Senior Senator J. Jonathan Barney, who was taken to court by his in-laws for refusal to dowry their dead daughter in conformity with tradition, should be allowed to bury his late fiancée Cecelia Boe.
Judge Kontoe has at the same time called on both families to unit in giving the late Cecelia Boe a peaceful interment other than tussling over the deceased.
But the deceased’s family has differed with the ruling, arguing that the Senator did not dowry their daughter in disregard to tradition and the laws of Liberia.
Reacting to the lower court’s judgment, Grand Bassa County Representative Barron Brown said he will seek final redress before the Supreme Court of Liberia.
However, Senator Barney may execute the burial writs this Saturday where there are delays for order to come down from the Supreme Court of Liberia to halt the burial process and review the matter as being demanded by Representative Brown.
Said Representative Brown: “The judge erred; the judge cannot tell me without any legal reliance that the mother, who gave birth to the lady that died, does not have preference as compared to the children.”
Though he promised not to disrupt whatever process, the Grand Bassa County lawmaker vowed to follow the pattern of law, while claiming that there were lapses in the lower court’s ruling on grounds that it was not established whether or not, Senator Barney formally married the late Cecelia Boe prior to her passing.
Brown further argued there was no legal reliance given by the court as it relates to the period of time a woman should be with a man to be declared a wife. He recalled that Senator Barney claimed to have paid dowry price of Cecelia to one Henry in his testimony, but “That Henry did not come to court.”
In the midst of the foregoing, Representative Brown warned, “We should not play with law in this country, because the fact of the matter, I think the best evidence in this issue was the person who dowry this girl out.”
He noted the court did not request for the appearance of Henry, who Barney claimed to have paid Cecelia’s dowry to, saying “this could not have happened to a Bryant, or a Williams.”
“…We understood the ruling that indeed, all of us should come together. But how can we come together with Senator Jonathan Barney without respecting and honoring our tradition,” Brown asked.
According to him, the Judge is in contradiction to have ruled that the children’s right supersedes the right of Cecelia’s mother and other members of the Boe Family, adding that “A photocopy cannot be important as compared to original.”
“…So, how [will] the courts says that the woman who gave birth to the girl (Cecelia) does not have right and it is only the children who are still living with their parents?” Brown wondered.
Representative Brown considered the process a jungle justice, insisting that it will not go with impunity. He insisted that what the family is claiming is to be part of the burial process, and for the senator to legitimize the relationship with the deceased as he allegedly did to his past dead fiancées.