September 21, 2018
By Ishmael Sallieu Koroma
The Executive Director of Native Consortium and Research Centre, Edmond Abu Jr. has in an open letter dated 7th September 2018, written to the Chief Justice of the Republic of Sierra Leone, demanding an explanation as to why a matter they had filed was still to be assigned to a judge, more than 8 months after filing.
‘’We have booked appointment to have a meeting with you three times but we could not, so we choose to write you this open letter and we hope this letter will meet you in good faith,’’ the letter reads.
The matter was in January 2018 filed by Edmond Abu Jr. and 299 other litigants against Africell Ltd., Orange Ltd., Sierratel and NATCOM, 1st,2nd,3rd,4th defendants respectively.
‘’Sir, poor Sierra Leonean consumers have suffered in silence for far too long, and our telecommunications industry needs proper sanitisation to ensure Sierra Leoneans enjoy quality service with a cheaper tariff.’’
They noted that a World Bank research had revealed that Sierra Leoneans pay the highest tariff in the world.
“As a Think Tank, we are duty bound to reverse this ugly trend desperately.”
According to the letter, the consortium believes that too many consumer violations have been catalogued in their writ, along with the reliefs prayed for, stating that their counterparts in Nigeria took MTN to court and the case was speedily addressed.
‘’We are so disappointed that we could see such delay in the judiciary. Sir, we filed a case against the said Defendants to the Master and Registrar on the 26th January 2018. Sir, we have got a Default Judgement on the 13th day of July 2018, but surprisingly our matter has not been assigned to any Judge,” the open letter stated.
The letter added that they had planned a nation-wide protest against the alleged unspeakable cheating by mobile operators and poor quality of service, but the former administration pleaded with them to seek justice, which they did since last year.
“Justice delayed is justice denied,” they said.
The letter continued that the consortium had, through their lawyer, enquired as to why the Chief Justice has not assigned their matter and that the said lawyer said it was due to the fact that the High Court was on vacation, but refused to tell them when their matter would come up.