November 21, 2016 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
Two youth – Theresa Lusanie Mbomaya and Bokai Kokofele were last Friday (18 November) remanded after their arraignment for allegedly posting inciting statements on social media.
Both accused persons were appeared before Magistrate Dr. Abou Bhkarr Binneh Kamara on two count charges of inciting statement and publication of false news, contrary to Section 32(1) of the Public Order Act of 1965.
The prosecution alleged that both accused persons, between Saturday 12 November and Wednesday 16 November, in Freetown, incited students countrywide to set ablaze vehicles plying the streets of Freetown on the night of Thursday 17 November, 2016.
The prosecution further alleges that both accused, between Saturday 12 November and Wednesday 16 November, also in Freetown, published false statements and rumour that would have disturbed the public peace, by threatening to set ablaze commercial vehicles if they failed to stay off the streets on Thursday 17 November, 2016.
While making a bail application on their behalf, Lawyer Francis Ben Kaifala told the court that both accused persons are residents of Freetown with reliable sureties willing and ready to stand in their recognisance.
He said first accused (Theresa Lusanie Mbomaya) was currently a student of Fourah Bay College and that if granted bail, she would not flee or interfere with prosecution witnesses.
However, the prosecution objected to bail on the grounds that the accused persons were arraigned in court for a very serious offence and that if granted bail they could interfere with prosecution witnesses.
Magistrate Kamara remanded both accused persons in prison and adjourned the matter to Monday, 21 November, 2016 to rule on the bail application.
The duo were arrested in the wake of public dissatisfaction with the decision of the government to increase the pump price for petroleum projects from Le3.750 to Le6,000.
Citizens have been urged to protest against the increase, which has caused prices of basic goods and services to multiple within days, although wages remain the same.