Sanghajor Alkalo Opens Defence In Joint Trial with Caliph General


By Kebba Jeffang Buyeh Touray, Alkalo of Darsilameh Sangajor who is the 2nd accusedSheikh Muhideen Hydara person in his trial with the Caliph General from the same village in Foni Kansala, has opened his defence yesterday, 23 February, 2015. When the case was called at the Brikama Magistrates’ Court before thePrincipal Magistrate, Omar Cham, Lawyer Antouman Gaye appeared for the accused persons while Chief Inspector Camara represented the Inspector General of Police (IGP). Lawyer Gaye told the court that he would like to begin taking evidence from the 2nd accused person due to his greater involvement in the matter than the 1st accused person. This was granted by the court after the prosecution made no objection. While in the witness box, the accused person identified himself as Buyeh Touray, the Alkalo of Darsilameh Sangajor in Foni Kansala district, West Coast Region. He said farming is his occupation and that he has been the Alkalo for about seven years after the death of his father. The 2nd accused person testified that he knows the 1st accused person Muhideen Hydara, adding that he is the head of the village. He said he is 50 years old and he has a family with one wife and 1 child. “I understand the charges against me and I disagreed that I have committed any wrong to the laws of the land. I understand the first count being ‘Conspiracy to commit misdemeanor’ as well as the second charge which is ‘Disobedience to a lawful order’. I disagreed that I have committed anything wrong as I am charged. I have seen and heard the prosecution witnesses’ testimonies and I disagree with their evidences against the Sheriff and I. This includes the evidence of the Chief of Kansala Momodou Lamin Jarju,” testified the 2nd accused person. Mr. Touray added that Chief sent his badge messenger to him and that he said to him (Touray) that there should be no prayer on Tuesday as the information came from the government. He said the messenger further told him that the information has to reach the Imam of the community. He said he went with the badge messenger (Seedy Gibba) to the Imam. “Upon arrival at Imam’s compound, I told the Imam that the badge messenger was sent by the Chief who said there should be no prayer on Tuesday. The messenger himself confirmed that, adding that the information is passed from the government. He added that the Chief said they heard that Sangajor didn’t observe prayer on Monday, 28th July, 2014 and that they should be prevented from observing it on the following Tuesday, 29th July, 2014,” said Alkalo Buyeh Touray. He explained that the Imam was the late Malign Hydara who passed away the following month after the Ramadan. He said the badge messenger was received on Monday night when many people have already gone to bed. He said the Imam and the Caliph General are not in the same compound. Asked by his counsel Gaye if he himself had performed prayers on Tuesday, he responded in the positive. At this juncture, the defence lawyer applied for adjournment for the continuation of the testimony from the 2nd accused person. No objection was made by the prosecution. The matter was therefore subsequently adjourned to the 3rd and 4th March, 2015 at 12pm respectively.]]>