Sierra Leone Telegraph: 24 October 2020:
The prosecution is now stalled in the trial of Abu Bakarr Daramy and Herbert George – Williams, after the two eye witnesses who were present at the scene of crime (Lumley round about in Freetown) on the 31st of March 2018, when the late Ibrahim Samura is alleged to have been assaulted by the accused persons said in court that the deceased was hit on his head with a bat by a police officer and not by the accused persons.
Responding to question by Melron Nicol – Wilson during cross examination last Tuesday, Thomas Dixon said that he knows the police officer that assaulted his friend and newspaper partner, and if seen, he can identify him.
He was asked by Nicol – Wilson to look around the court and see if that police Officer is around. Thomas Dixon looked around the court room and confirmed he could not see the police officer.
Mahmoud Tim Kargbo another reputable journalist and friend of the deceased, under cross examination from Nicol – Wilson also said that both accused persons never had any contact with the deceased on the day he was assaulted, even though they were present at the scene together with hundreds of other people including journalists as it was Election Day . He said the accused never had any altercation with the deceased and were on the opposite side of the road.
After the testimony of the two EU witnesses, the prosecution appeared embarrassed that they have not been able to proceed with the matter once again.
For the last one month the state prosecutor Umu Sumaray merely comes to court and ask for an adjournment, saying she is unable to get her other witnesses.
Last Tuesday, 20th October 2020, the judge once again adjourned the matter to November 5. Previously he had adjourned for two weeks to yesterday, since no witness was available.
For how long can this charade and ‘extra-judicial’ punishment continue?
It is now clear that innocent men – Abu Bakarr Daramy and Herbert George–Williams, were kept in prison for almost one year for a crime they did not commit.
Instead of the state dropping the case, they continue to drag it with adjournments, thus wasting the court’s time and resources on a mistrial.
Justice in Sierra Leone is fast becoming a joke, if not for the suffering of hundreds of people experiencing serious miscarriage of justice at the hands of the courts.
It is now time for Attorney General – Brewah (Photo) to take a closer look at the justice system, especially those cases that involve politically exposed individuals in the country, where it seems retributive justice, vendetta and abuse of State power against political opponents, continue to grow with impunity.
It is time also for the Attorney General to call a halt to the murder trial against the former Mayor Herbert George-Williams and Mr. Abu Bakarr Daramy, due to lack of evidence.