‘Herbert Williams broke the lens of my camera’

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-Journalist Patrick tells court

June 22, 2018

By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

Patrick Jaiah Kamara, a Concord Times reporter who was brutally beaten by a group of goons of the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC),  yesterday narrated in court that the disgraced former Mayor of the Freetown City Council, Herbert George Williams, held his Canon EOS70D camera that cost $3,500 , broke it lens and took it along with him.

Patrick told the court that he had known the accused since he was Mayor of the Freetown City Council.

He narrated before Magistrate Santigie Bangura, presiding at Magistrate Court No.1, how he was brutalised by Herbert George Williams, Sanusi Bruski and others unknown to him, during the March 31 presidential run-off election.

He told the court that on the day of the incident, he went to Mafa Field at Lumley after he got a tip-off that there were some skirmishes taking place at the polling centre.

‘We went to Mafa and parked our car fifty metres off the polling centre. I moved towards the polling station, switched on my camera and took the first snapshot of the incident. Immediatelly I wanted to take the next snapshot, the accused and Sanusi Bruski grabbed my camara.The accused grabbed the lens of the camera, forcefully broke it and moved away with it, while Bruski grabbed the body of the camera which we later retrieved from him,’ he narrated.

The young reporter continued that during the incident ‘Herbert Williams and Sanusi Bruski gave me heavy blows on my left eye to a point that it got swollen.’

Patrick further told the court that since the incident he had not set eyes on the lens of the camera, but noted that body is with the police at Lumley.

He stated that the incident was witnessed by Abu-bakarr Sheriff and Ishmael S. Koroma, editor and reporter of Concord Times, respectively

Meanwhile, Police Prosecutor Inspector Isatu Gbassay Fofanah applied for the matter to be adjourned, adding that the witness would complete his testimony at the nest hearing – 3rd July.

Herbert Williams, who doubles as the Western Area Regional Organising Secretary for the APC, is standing trial on three counts of conspiracy to commit a felony to wit assault, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and malicious damage contrary to the laws of Sierra Leone.

The prosecution says the accused conspired with other unknown persons on Saturday, 31st March, 2018, at Mafa Field, Lumley, in Freetown and assaulted Patrick Jaiah Kamara while performing his duty as a journalist.

In count three, the prosecution also alleges that the accused also damaged a Canon EOS70D camera that was on the journalist.