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Lawyer Darboe's no-case-submission dismissed

Mar 4, 2010, 3:14 PM | Article By: Dawda Faye

Principal Magistrate Kayode Olajubutu of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court on 3rd March 2010 dismissed the no-case-submission made by Lawyer Ousainou Darboe in the Femi Peters' case.

Magistrate Olajubutu started his ruling by referring to the evidence of the prosecution witnesses.

In Lawyer Darboe's submission, he said, the defence counsel told the court that the witness gave evidence that the defendant was found sitting during the rally and that there was no procession. Also he said the rally was held by the UDP.

Lawyer Darboe had also submitted that the second prosecution witness testified that the accused person was sitting at the podium, and that somebody else was speaking, the magistrate further recalled.

The defence counsel had stated in his submission that PW1 and PW2 said the same thing in their evidence, and that PW3 repeated what PW1 and PW2 had said, Magistrate Olajubutu added.

The defence counsel had also argued that it was the UDP that held the rally, and not the accused person, the magistrate went on, further noting that the defence counsel had submitted that the statement of offence and the particulars of offence were at variance.

Referring to the prosecutor's argument, Magistrate Olajubutu said the prosecutor had stated that the prosecution witnesses testified that there was a procession and the use of a loudspeaker.

They also gave evidence that it was the accused person who signed the application (letter) made by the UDP to hold a rally and further made a follow up, the Magistrate further noted.

The Magistrate stated that he could not agree with the defence counsel that there is no need to obtain a permit under the Public Order Act.

He went on to say that the defence counsel had argued that the accused person did not oppose or disobey any order. Magistrate Olajubutu said this was not the case.

Still delivering his ruling, the trial Magistrate told the court that it was the accused who personally applied for a permit to hold a rally, as the UDP Campaign Manager, and that he was the author of the application.

He further stated that there was evidence that the accused was part of the procession, as they were escorting a car. He added that there was knowledge by the accused of the use of a loudspeaker at the rally.

"For not using a loudspeaker does not mean that the accused is not connected to the offence,"  Magistrate Olajubutu added.

In his ruling, the Magistrate declared that he was convinced going by the evidence of the prosecution witnesses that the accused person has a case to answer. He, therefore, dismissed the no-case-submission made by the defence counsel, and asked the accused person (Femi Peters) to enter his defence. The case was adjourned to 17th March 2010.