Justice Sie-A-Nyene Gyapay Yuoh is the third female Chief Justice in Liberia’s 175 years of existence. The founding member of the Association of Female Lawyers of Liberia (AFELL) and former Associate Justice was one of two female judges in the current five-member Supreme Court.
The Liberian senate has confirmed Justice Sie-A-Nyene Gyapay Yuoh as the country’s new Chief Justice. She will be the first woman to become CJ since 2003 but the third female CJ to head the Supreme Court since Liberia’s independence in 1847. The two previous female CJs were Frances Johnson Allison and Gloria Musu Scott.
Justice Yuoh succeeds Francis Korkpor, who retires in September, a year before the next presidential and general elections. She takes over a court mired in corruption (as with many other Sub-Saharan judicial systems) with a Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) score of 29/100 (a country’s perceived level of public sector corruption where 0 is extremely corrupt and 100 is impeccably lawful) and ranking at 136 out of 180 countries and territories in Transparency International’s 2021 report. Liberia has dropped 12 points since 2012, making it one of the biggest decliners in sub-Saharan Africa.