Liberia: Tussle Over Dual Citizenship

Published: 11/Sep/2022
Source: The New Republic (Liberia)

By R. Joyclyn Wea

The Ministry of Justice and the Supreme Court of Liberia are at each other’s throat, legally dabbling to fine-tune the authorization of Liberian citizenship or issuance of Liberian passport to natural born Liberian citizens in foreign nations as enshrined in article 20(a) and backed by Article 95(a) of the 1986 constitution.

The High Court, the final arbiter of Justice in Liberia, argues that a person can go through the due process of law in a court of competent jurisdiction to acquire his or her Liberian citizenship, but the MOJ thinks otherwise.

In a case heard May 10, 2017 and decided December 23, 2019, the Supreme Court ruled that it is only the court that has the right to mandate government institutions to give natural born Liberians residing in foreign nations Citizenship following a due process of law as indicated in Article 20(a) and not MOJ.

Article 20(a) of the Constitution provides that there must be a hearing consistent with due process of law before deprivation of rights may occur.

The High Court also quoted Article 95(a) of the 1986 constitution which provides that any pre-1986 statute or rule of law that is found in conflict with any provision of the 1986 Constitution was abrogated along with the 1847 Constitution.

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Themes: Dual Nationality
Regions: Liberia
Year: 2022