The Association of Female Lawyers of Liberia (AFELL) has inducted Attorney Esther Seaton-Cee as its seventh president to head a leadership comprised of Attorneys Vivian Neal, 1st vice president; Lois Nimely Nyenpan, 2nd vice president; Irene Saie, Secretary General; Joyce Tarpeh, Financial Secretary; Joyce Woods, Treasurer and Noamie Gray, Chaplain.
Associate Justice Cianneh Yuoh pleaded with AFELL to educate members of the various communities because people are still ignorant of the reality of what happens in the courts regarding the legal system. She encouraged AFELL to help in spreading the law, teaching the commoners about how the process works.
Associate Justice Yuoh said AFELL has the larger audience so it is better placed to educate them because there is no time limit in educating people about their rights and processes that leads to the conduct of their affairs.
Buttressing the call made by his colleague, Associate Kabineh Jan;neh called on all lawyers to respect the dignity of the court because the Supreme Court remains unbending on dealing appropriately with any lawyer who brings the court in disrepute adding that the Supreme Court will not sit silently where lawyers put the judiciary to disrepute or take kindly complaints of no assignments as being the delay for prosecuting matters.
Associate Justice Yuoh challenged lawyers to pursue assignment and that AFELL should spearhead the training and educating of those who they advocate for by letting them know what is obtaining regarding the court system.
Inducting the new leadership to steer the Association for the next two years, Cllr. Moses Peagar said members of the Liberia National Bar Association recognizes the duo logy of membership and urged the members to support each other at the level of the Bar.
He urged his fellow lawyers to see members of the Association not only as females and put them down because they are competent and capable of occupying elected position in the Bar leadership. He identified the passage of the Rape and Inheritance Laws as part of AFELL’s efforts that are appreciative and meaningful.
Cllr. Peagar called on the AFELL members not to only concern themselves with women in distress and children but with issues brought to them by men, an advocacy he recognized is already being exercised by the Association.
Outgoing president, P. Teplah Reeves said service is about commitment, leading and getting result. Taking over the gavel of leadership since July, 2011, she told the gathering how since then she sailed a ship where several persons fell by the wayside while others stayed onboard.
She said now that her ship has docked with only few persons still onboard with a visible success story namely the opening of three offices in Bong, Bomi and Grand Bassa Counties and the nation-wide simplification of the inheritance and rape law in several remote communities almost across the country.
Atty. Reeves said with the laws the domestic violence awareness campaign was her leadership road map into implementing a strategic plan and she urged the new leadership to continue from where her leadership left off.
She disclosed that just at the close of her tenure, AFELL was engaged in stopping an early marriage of a teenager who refused to be given in marriage to an older person when she would have preferred being in school.
The seventh president Seaton-Cee said during her tenure, efforts of members will be inclusive as her leadership will strive to bring onboard all female lawyers and law school students but emphasized the importance and urgency of due payments which is an obligation of every member to the growth of the Association.
Atty. Seaton-Cee said her expectations are to ensure good services, promote AFELL and called on all female lawyers and those aspiring to become lawyers to put in time, visit the headquarters at all times, and represent the Association at meetings and functions when necessary or called upon.
She asked for each member to give candid pieces of advice to the Association as it will encourage constructive criticism and that her leadership will address only germane issues of women, children and elderly and promised to act within the confines of the law.