APC In Court Today

Over a year ago after the National Returning Officer of the National Electoral Commission (NEC) announced the winners of the 7th March, 2018 parliamentary election, the High Court in Freetown continues to hear election petitions brought against sixteen main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) party Members of Parliament that were elected in the Western Area.

Today Thursday 2nd May, 2019, the lawyers representing nine of the petitioned APC MPs would appear before Justice MAS Stevens to defend their clients against allegations of election malpractices brought against them by lawyers representing the nine governing Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) applicants that lost to them in that election.

A summon from the High Court Master and Registrar to one of the petitioned APC MPs, Hon. Emmanuel Saidu Conteh brought against him by the SLPP petitioner, Fatmata Sarah Soukenal invites the former to appear before Justice MAS Stevens on Wednesday 1st May.

However, the day being an International Labor Day, The Exclusive contacted the Public Relations Officer and Official Spokesperson of the Judiciary of Sierra Leone, Moses Kamara to clarify the issue. He stated according to court procedure, where summon for a hearing falls on a holiday, the appearance date is shifted to the following day. The court, he said, will inform the parties accordingly.

When contacted, Hon. Saidu Conteh said they would not act against court procedure, adding that the invitation they received is for 1st May, 2019, which turned out to be an international holiday. He maintained that they were looking up to the Judiciary to slate another date.

Like the trial of the first set of 7 APC parliamentarians that are petitioned by their SLPP rivals, whose cases are before Justice Komba Kamanda awaiting verdict after they had been heard, court source said the allegations against the nine APC MPs that would stand before Justice Stevens today for trial include electoral malpractices, violence and constitutional infraction.

The nine petitioned APC lawmakers in court today include Hon. Wurro Timbo-Jalloh of Constituency 119, Hon. Isaac Tarawally of Constituency 118, Hon. Hariatu A. Bangura of Constituency 116, Hon. Saidu Conteh of Constituency 129 and Hon. Kemoh Conteh.

Meanwhile, the APC hierarchy has in the name of justice and democracy urged the Judiciary for action on the 32 petitions filed against the ruling SLPP MPs in 32 constituencies nationwide.