By Yankuba Jallow
The ongoing criminal trial involving some Kanfenda residents yesterday, February 23, 2017 failed to proceed due to the defense counsel failing to put its house in order according to Principal Magistrate Omar Cham of the Brikama Magistrates Court.
When the case was called, Inspector Sarja Sanyang, Inspector Badjie, Inspector K. Gibba and Sergeant B.F.M. Jaitteh announced their appearance for the Inspector General of Police whilst Lawyer Ibrahim Jallow appeared for the accused persons.
Counsel Jallow told the court that he was served the case file on Wednesday, 22 February, 2017 and he has not been able to meet his clients. “I submit for the court to grant me indulgence to announce to the accused persons that I am representing them,” he submitted. Upon hearing his submission, the trial magistrate pointed out that as legal practitioner, he is expected to know all the procedures of a criminal trial, adding that he is disappointed with counsel Jallow who he said ought to know the procedures of court but failed to follow the procedures. “Your submission cannot be done in court and I give a day to put your house in order,” Magistrate Cham ruled.
This criminal matter was well attended by APRC party supporters as well as the relatives and sympathisers of the accused persons. When the matter was ruled for adjournment, tears were shed by both the accused persons and their loved ones. This reporter saw some members of the prosecution pleading to those crying to have faith and patience. After the case, all the accused persons were escorted to Banjul to be remanded there.
The accused persons are Banna Kujabi, Sunkau Bojang, Aminata Bojang, Amie Saidy, Hawa Manga, Sohna Bojang, Hawa Badjie, Mai Dampha, Yamundow Manga, Nyara Yanga, Rabiatu Bojang, Mai Daffeh, Mai Gibba, Sunkau Wodeh, Wudeh Bojang, Fatoumatta Sidibeh, Sarjor Daffeh, Lamin Manga, Lala Saidy, Sireh Jatta, Sainey Camara, Mai Manneh Sulayman Manga, Madiba Manga and Sira Bojang.
They are charged with prohibition of conduct conducive to the breach of the peace contrary to section 9 of the Public Order Act.
According to the particulars of offence, on or about the February 19, 2017, at Kanfenda Check Point, in the Foni District, West Coast Region used abusive or insulting words to Lulu Sanyang and some others when they were going back to their respective destinations from the Independence Celebrations and the Inauguration of the new President, Adama Barrow.