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In Pap Saine's False Publication Case, Defence Makes Objection to the Charge

Feb 26, 2009, 3:46 AM | Article By: Dawda Faye

Hawa Sissay-Sabally, one of the defence counsels for Mr Pap Saine, Managing Editor and Co-Publisher of The Point newspaper yesterday Wednesday 25th February 2009 along with Lawyer Modou Musa Drammeh, objected to the charge their client is facing.

The accused, Mr Pap Saine, was first arraigned on the 4th February 2009 before Magistrate Sagarr Jahateh of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court and charged with false publication and broadcasting, contrary to section 181 (A) of the criminal code cap 10 vol. 111, laws of The Gambia 1990, as amended by the criminal code amendment act No.18 of 2004.

In yesterday's proceedings, when Lawyer Hawa Sisay-Sabally rose before Acting Principal Magistrate Sainabou Wadda-Ceesay of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court, who is now presiding over the case, she objected to the substitution of the charge stating that the section under which the accused has been charged has been amended by the 2005 Act. She argued that the 2004 Act does not exist anymore and urged the court to strike out the case.

Police prosecutor Fadera applied to the court for an adjournment so that he could refer to the authority cited by the defence counsel and to come properly to amend the charge if necessary.

The case was subsequently adjourned to the 11th March 2009 for reply by the prosecution.

Meanwhile, according to media reports, Magistrate Sagarr Jahateh of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court has resigned from her position. Magistrate Jahateh, who was until her resignation presiding over the case of Mr Pap Saine, Co Publisher and Managing editor of The Point newspaper, was called to the lower bench in 2008. No reason(s) was however advanced for her resignation.