THE ADVANTAGE OF PURSUING RIGHTS IN THE COURTS INSTEAD OF POLITICISING CASES

54

Readers would recall that when President Barrow expressed the desire for the police to arrest and re-arrest people who are allegedly doing wrong things to him and his government there was general feeling that The Gambia was heading towards the dark days of violation of rights with impunity.

Foroyaa emphasized that a system has an executive, legislative and judicial arms. It was indicated that these arms are established to protect the people; that it was the duty of people to take them to task, if anyone feels unprotected under the law. It was made clear that the NPP and the UDP are in control of the National Assembly and they have power to summon the executive to discuss any matter of national interest. We argued that the Constitution has made it explicit that no one should be detained for more than 72 hours without being brought before court or be released with or without bail. We added that every citizen has the right to go to the high court for any violation of one’s fundamental rights.

Foroyaa followed the case of Bora Sisawo, who did what a person should do when one knows one’s rights. Now the court has awarded him what it deems fit as remedy to the wrong done to him.

The lesson is clear. People can take authorities to court and get remedy. However, the people must also recognise that authorities can also take them to court to get remedy. Hence those authorities and people who do not want to pay compensation should do no wrong to anyone.

This is how we can build a rights based society free from wrong doing. This is the way forward if we want to live in peace under the rule of law.