November 18, 2021
By Jeneba A Conteh
Lawyer Dauda Laingay Bangura, Manager,Law Enforcement Department, National Protected Area Authority (NPAA), on Tuesday, 16 November, 2021, testified against the former headman of Mambo Community, Julius Amara, for illegally entering into the boundaries of the NPAA.
In his testimony before Magistrate Sahr Kekura of Court No 1, lawyer Dauda Lengay Bangura said in July 2020, they received a report that some people were engaged in massive deforestation within the protected area at Mombo Community around the peninsula.
“Upon receiving that report, Management of NPAA including the Executive Director went to the scene. Reaching at the scene, we met people brushing and when we asked them about whose instruction they were acting upon and how they got into the land, they responded that it was the former headman, Julius Amara alias Sheik, who told them to brush and construct a house,” he testified.
The witness further testified that they went to see the headman at his residence, but he was not present by then.
He said they dropped a message for him to report to the office at Congo Town and that within 2 days the accused reported together with other two people.
Lawyer Bangura said the headman was subjected to questioning with regards the brushing/deforestation of the area and that he responded to be the one responsible.
“So, we called on police from Congo Cross to arrest the accused and the two others, but the accused shed tears and pleaded that he will not enter into the protected area any longer,” he testified.
He said the accused made an undertaking that he will be an ambassador now to protect the no-go area.
He also said after the undertaking was done and signed by the accused, he was released.
“But within 2 weeks, we received another complaint from the guard that massive deforestation was ongoing and that the accused was called upon but couldn’t show up. He was later arrested and kept at the OSD Headquarters where he made statement while the matter was charged to court.”
The accused was remanded until the 26 November 2021.Inspector I. G Fofanah is prosecuting the matter.