June 20, 2017 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
Principal Magistrate of the Freetown Magistrates’ Court No. 1, Dr. Abou Bhakarr Binneh-Kamara, has yesterday restored bail conditions for the Membership Director of the newly formed National Progressive Democrats (NPD) party, Jesmed Foday Suma, after spending almost a month at the Freetown Male Correctional Centre on Pademba Road for contempt of court.
Magistrate Binneh-Kamara had seized the one hundred million Leones (Le100m) bail plus two sureties he had granted Jesmed Foday Suma on Tuesday, 28 March, 2017, for the offence of sedition and acting disorderly. He was remanded at the Male Correctional Centre on Pademba Road for contempt of court.
Jesmed Foday Suma, on 11th May, 2017, in a press conference he summoned outside the Freetown main law court building, had accused Magistrate Binneh-Kamara of injustice, claiming that “he is being used by politicians to suppress the democratic voices of people.”
He further alleged that the magistrate has used himself as an instrument and has proven that he lacks the ‘ethical and moral values’ to be a magistrate in Sierra Leone.
Looking remorseful after spending weeks in jail without bail, Jesmed Suma, on Wednesday 14th June, 2017, apologised in court for statements he had made against the Court and Magistrate.
“On 2nd May, 2017, I made certain statements out of frustration and I do honestly apologise for the generalised statements towards the judiciary and the Magistrate,” said.
Meanwhile, Magistrate Binneh Kamara described Suma’s apology as sincere and promised to restore the initial bail conditions.
Restoring his bail conditions yesterday, Magistrate Binneh-Kamara apologised to counsel representing the accused for not releasing his client last Friday 16th June, 2017, as he had promised, stating that he could not because the judiciary had conference on the said date.
He ordered the restoration of the bail conditions of the accused and admonished counsel representing the accused to warn him not to make any statement on the matter until the substantive matter ends in court.
The accused is currently undergoing preliminary investigation at the Freetown Magistrate Court No.1 on two counts charge of Sedition contrary to Section 33 (1) (6) of the Public Order Act No.46 of 1965 and disorderly behaviour contrary to Section 12 of the Public Order Act No.46 of 1965 as amended by Section 15 of act No.2 of 1975.