President Sirleaf Signs the Book of Condolence for Former Chief Justice, His Honor Johnnie N. Lewis

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(MONROVIA, LIBERIA – Monday, February 2, 2015) President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has led an array of officials of the Government of Liberia to sign the Book of Condolence for the former Chief Justice of the Honorable Supreme Court of Liberia, His Honor Johnnie N. Lewis.

According to an Executive Mansion release, the solemn and mournful ceremony took place on the first floor of the Temple of Justice on Monday, February 2, 2015.

Others who signed the Book were Vice President Joseph N. Boakai and Members of the Senate; Speaker Alex Tyler and Members of the House of Representatives; His Honor the Chief Justice Francis Korkpor and Associate Justices of the Supreme Court of Liberia and the National Bar Association; and former Heads of State and former Vice Heads of State of the Republic of Liberia.

Still others who signed the Book were the Doyen and Members of the Diplomatic Corps, Consular Corps, the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN Mission in Liberia and Head of International Organizations; the Clergy and Imams; other Officials of Government; Heads of Public Corporations, Autonomous Agencies, Bureaus and Commissions; and former Officials of Government.

On Tuesday, February 3, Heads of Political Parties, Heads of Civil Society Organizations and the General Public will sign the Book of Condolence. The Book remains opened till 12:00 noon.

The late Chief Justice Lewis died on Wednesday evening, January 21, in Monrovia en route to the John F. Kennedy Medical Center. He was 69 years old.

In a brief statement announcing his death on Thursday, January 22, President Sirleaf said the late Counselor served his country and the international community with extraordinary talent, intellect, knowledge and brilliance and urged all Liberians to grant him the respect he duly deserves.

She expressed heartfelt condolences to the official family – the Honorable Supreme Court of Liberia, the Liberian National Bar Association, as well as the biological family and friends of the deceased.

On Wednesday, February 4, his remains will be removed from Samuel A. Stryker Funeral Home at 3:00 pm and taken to the Temple of Justice for one hour for viewing and later taken to the St. Thomas Episcopal Church on Camp Johnson Road for one night of wake keeping commencing at 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

On Thursday, February 5, beginning at 10:00 am, funeral rites will be said at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion, Ashmun Street followed by repast at the Monrovia City Hall. Thereafter, the body will be returned to the Samuel Stryker Funeral Home.

His remains will be conveyed to Greenville, Sinoe County on Friday, February 6, for another night of wake keeping; while on Saturday, February 7, at 10:00 pm, commendation of the body will take place at the St. Paul Episcopal Church followed by internment at the Lewis Cemetery, Red Hill, Greenville, Sinoe County.

Cllr. Lewis (69) was appointed Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia in 2006 until his early retirement became effective on September 10, 2012. In his letter to me dated August 28, 2012, he had cited health reasons for stepping aside at 66 years old then. Prior to this position, he was appointed by President William R. Tolbert and served with credit and distinction as Resident Circuit Judge of the Third Judicial Circuit in Sinoe County, replacing his deceased father who also performed in that capacity as well as Ad hoc Chief Justice of the Supreme Court with dignity and respect.

As Head of the Third Branch of Government, Cllr. Lewis led a tradition of calm judgment, hard work and unwavering devotion to duty; thus immensely contributing to the development of the country.