Human Rights, Justice

Dr. Jawara Defamation Case suffers Set Backs

The defamation case filed by Dr. Abubakary Jawara against the proprietor of the Trumpet online Newspaper, Fabakary B Ceesay has suffered setbacks after the trial judge gave another chance to journalist Ceesay to put the house in order.

When the case was called on Thursday, March 2, 2023, lawyer Ida Drammeh her appearance for Dr. Abubakary Jawara, whilst Defendant Fabakary B Ceesay announced that he acquired the service of Lawyer Borry S. Touray but that lawyer Touray could not be in court due to the tide scheduled.

Continuing the trial lawyer Drammeh informed the trial judge, Justice Bakre, that the matter was set for continuation, arguing that the defendant Fabakary B Ceesay is yet to file his witness statement since he was served on December 16, 2022, and has failed the appropriate time scheduled for him (Fabakary B Ceesay) was to file adding that the trial cannot to drag on without a proper reason.

Responding to this the defendant Fabakary B Ceesay informed the court that he did file and was admitted by the trial judge on the previous proceedings, in reply to this, the trial judge Justice Bakre said the defendant did not file the said statement and he did not admit any statement but after cross-checking Justice Bakre affirmed that he did admit the said witness statement but he cannot overrule himself, at this juncture the Plaintiff’s lawyer, Ida Drammeh applied to formally write for the court to strike the said statement out, noting that the court could also use the role that the witness statement was not submitted on time as the defendant was served on December, 16th 2022 and before the defendant filed in his statement it takes more than the required 30 days without letting the court know what was the reason to that.

At this point the defendant Ceesay asked for the court to grant him an adjournment citing that he recently lost his father and his son and was equally suffering from common cool, but the trial judge said that is not enough reason to adjourn the matter since it was set for continuation and the defendant was given enough time to put his house in order and failed to do so, adding that justice is in three folds which one side is for the defendant, plaintiff, and the public.

According to the trial judge, he asked the defendant many times to seek the service of a lawyer but Ceesay insisted he will be able to defend himself without the service of a lawyer.

At this juncture lawyer, Ida Drammeh drew the attention of the court to the citation that the court could proceed with a trial with or without the defendant having the service of a lawyer, adding that cannot stop the court from proceeding since the defendant was insisting he will proceed without a lawyer.

Justice Bakre argues that at the initial proceeding, he adjourned the matter in the interest of the defendant, and if continues to do so there can be a public outcry that he is not considering the plaintiff which is not correct.

The defendant Fabakary B Ceesay at this stage informed the trial judge that he has a lawyer Borry Touray to represent him but that lawyer Touray could not come to court due to the reason that he (Borry) was much busy at his office promised that he will be present at the next sitting.

Fabakary B. Ceesay

At this point Journalist Ceesay informed the court that he has lots of evidence in terms of audio and documents that he has from another ongoing trial which he intends to use as exhibits in his defamation case.

However, Lawyer Drammeh interjected and asked the court for the witness to tell the court how and from whom he got the said documents, noting that the court asked the defendant to open his defense.

Adjourning the matter the trial judge Justice Bakre warned that he will continue with the matter even though Fabakary B Ceesay did not secure the service of a lawyer because he has adjourned twice for the defendant Ceesay to put his house in order and cannot continue to drag the court any longer on such excuses but in response, Fabakary Ceesay said he can guarantee his attendance at the next sitting but cannot guarantee that of his would be a lawyer.

The trial is set to continue on March 14th, 2023 at noon.

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