Sierra Leone Telegraph: 15 February 2016
Sierra Leone’s opposition politician and presidential aspirant – Alie Kabba (Photo: In green, white and blue tie), whom his supporters say is the country’s most outspoken opposition leader, appeared today at the High Court, two days earlier than had been expected.
He has been charged with alleged bigamy, under Section 57 of the offences against the person Act of 1861 and Section 2(1) of the perjury Act of 1911.
The allegation of bigamy was brought by his ex-wife – Finda Diana Konomanyi, the controversial ruling APC minister of local government.
But tonight the Sierra Leone Telegraph has seen documentary evidence, revealing that his ex-wife Diana had been legally married to a Mr. Steven Jusu in London, yet had failed to inform Alie Kabba before they got married in Freetown.
Is this yet another twist to the case, which magistrate Seray Wurie, did not want to be heard?
A spokesman for Alie Kabba said that this shows that Diana had deceived Alie Kabba into marrying her, whilst pretending she had never been married before.
This evidence was never examined at the magistrate court last month, because magistrate Seray Wurie – who himself is believed to be a senior member of the ruling APC party, had refused to allow Alie Kabba’s lawyers the right to cross-examine the minister – Diana Konomanyi, under oath.
Alie Kabba’s first appearance at the High Court was initially scheduled for Wednesday, 17th February, 2016.
Supporters of the opposition presidential aspirant say that, his case was hurriedly brought forward today, because the government is trying to “scupper ongoing arrangements for a planned protest march that had been scheduled for Wednesday, 17th”, calling for an end to the illegal and political victimisation of Alie Kabba.
During his brief appearance at the High Court this morning, the sitting High Court Judge – Miatta Samba, listened to deposition from the prosecution bench and a counter presentation from the defence counsel.
Remarkably, and in the pursuance of justice, Judge Miatta Samba overturned the previous draconian bail conditions imposed on Alie Kabba two weeks ago, by the politically compromised magistrate Seray Wurie.
She reduced the number of sureties from two to one, who was only required to present two items of proof of home address – electricity and water bills.
Speaking to a group of supporters who had gathered outside the High Court, on hearing news of this morning’s appearance, Alie Kabba who is described by his supporters as a ‘radical progressive nationalist’ said: “This battle is for the 99% of Sierra Leoneans who are bitterly suffering in the country.
“This is a fight to ensure that there is equal justice for all; that the youths are gainfully employed; that opportunities are based on needs and not on regional politics.”
Last Saturday, after unconfirmed reports of the imminent arrest of Alie Kabba in advance of his High Court appearance went viral on social media, Sierra Leone’s Attorney General and Minister of justice – Joseph Kamara, who himself is an experienced judge, denied the allegation of government’s plan to arrest Kabba.
He told the Sierra Leone Telegraph that his main aim is to speed up the judiciary process, so that those seeking justice as well as those accused, can have speedy and fair trial.
Today’s preliminary hearing was adjourned till the 16th of March, 2016.