You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Members of Jersey City’s NAACP want branch president removed days before re-election

NJ.com logo NJ.com 1/14/2021 Joshua Rosario, nj.com
a man wearing a suit and tie: The Jersey City NAACP held its installation on its new leadership at the Metropolitan AME Zion Church on Sunday, January 13, 2019. The Jersey City NAACP President Rev. Nathaniel B. Legay. © Michael Dempsey | The Jersey Journal/nj.com/TNS The Jersey City NAACP held its installation on its new leadership at the Metropolitan AME Zion Church on Sunday, January 13, 2019. The Jersey City NAACP President Rev. Nathaniel B. Legay.

Members of the Jersey City NAACP are calling for the removal of their branch president just days before he runs unopposed for re-election.

Dozens of members recently filed a complaint with the NAACP’s national headquarters seeking the “expulsion, suspension or removal” of current Jersey City branch president Rev. Nathaniel Legay, who is on the ballot in the organization’s election Saturday.

The document, which was signed by 37 branch members, alleges Legay is no longer eligible to be a member of the local chapter because he hasn’t lived or worked in Jersey City since 2019. The article 10 expulsion complaint also accuses Legay of violating election procedures, leading to the disqualification of “rival candidates.”

a man wearing a suit and tie: The Jersey City NAACP held its installation on its new leadership at the Metropolitan AME Zion Church on Sunday, January 13, 2019. The Jersey City NAACP President Rev. Nathaniel B. Legay. © Michael Dempsey | The Jersey Journal/nj.com/TNS The Jersey City NAACP held its installation on its new leadership at the Metropolitan AME Zion Church on Sunday, January 13, 2019. The Jersey City NAACP President Rev. Nathaniel B. Legay.

Legay, president of the Jersey City NAACP since 2017, denied all allegations made against him. He said he is not involved in the organization’s election process, which is handled by a committee.

The document asserts Legay lives in Hillside and was replaced as pastor at Metropolitan A.M.E. Zion Church in Jersey City in 2019. He told The Jersey Journal that he still lives and works in the city, but declined to say where, calling it a “civil rights issue.”

He added it was the national organization that deemed certain members ineligible to run for leadership positions in Jersey City.

The NAACP’s headquarters did not respond to an email seeking comment.

“When it comes to elections the supervisory committee at the elections site will verify (personal) information,” Legay said. “So, you want me to tell you where I live? And you want me to tell you where I work? Will that suffice for them?”

But the complaint includes numerous documents showing Legay apparently lives in Hillside with his wife. In a police report filed in July when the office of the Jersey City branch was burglarized, Legay used a Hillside address when reporting the crime to the police.

“So they are investigating my background and my life story without my approval … who are they to investigate my life?” Legay said.

“I am eligible to run for president of the Jersey City branch that is all I can tell you,” Legay added when asked again if he lived in the city.

The document’s signees include Chris Gadsden, Neil Brunson, Mario Moody, and Board of Education Trustees Lorenzo Richardson and Joan Terrell-Paige.

The complaint also called into question Legay’s opposition to a city project converting the Bethune Center parking lot into a park and paving over a nearby pocket park. The complaint alleges Legay threatened to sue the city without first gaining pre-written authorization of the national organization’s president and CEO, breaking NAACP bylaws.

“This fiasco was another black eye on the Jersey City NAACP Branch caused by weak reactive leadership that is devoid of strategy,” the document states.

AdChoices
AdChoices

More From NJ.com

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon