Pateh Bah, the son of more than 100 year-old Bakary Bah, a farmer of Buduk Village, Nianija District, Central River Region is crying for justice.
Pateh claims that his father has been denied ownership of land that he (Bakary) had inherited from his father and had been cultivating since his childhood. Pateh claims that the verdict of the Nianija District Tribunal in June 2015 is wrong in many respects and wanted the verdict quashed but could not since then lay his hands on the written verdict despite all efforts to secure it.
Bakary Bah has the right to appeal and wishes to exercise that right in accordance with section 132 of the Constitution and the District Tribunal Act. However, so long as there are barriers pre-emptying the appeal the talk of right of appeal will be empty charter.
The task of the Judiciary in moving from a broken system to a fair system that respects the rule of law and brings justice to all and sundry, is not only to ensure its independence and impartiality but that all judicial decisions are respected and supported by the Executive; a system where records of proceedings are readily available at all levels; a system where there is speedy dispensation of justice.
The Chief Justice, as Head of the Judiciary, carries the burden of administering and supervising the courts as stipulated in section 121 subsection (4) of the Constitution which states:
“The Chief Justice shall be the head of the Judiciary and, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, shall be responsible for the administration and supervision of the courts.”
The constitution also gives power to the Chief Justice to facilitate the proper and efficient operation of the courts in section 143(1) which states:
“In the exercise of his or her responsibilities for the administration of the courts, the Chief Justice may issue orders and directions for the proper and efficient operation of the courts.”