As part of Judiciary’s commitment to expeditious trial in the country, the Hon. Chief Justice of the Republic of Sierra Leone, Hon. Justice Desmond Babatunde Edwards approved the holding of Special Sessions of the High Court of Sierra Leone in Moyamba, Portloko and Sefadu in Kono from the 10th to the 21st June, 2019.
These sessions are in line with the vision of the Judiciary of Sierra Leone “Accessible, fair and expeditious justice for all in Sierra Leone”. The eleven days (11) special sessions will ensure access to expeditious trial for three hundred and thirty-five (335) accused persons, and to know their fates within a precise time.
These cases are being presided by Hon. Justice Samuel O M Taylor in Portloko, Hon. Justice Augustine K. Musa in Kono and Hon. Justice Alfred Ganda in Moyamba with supervision provided by Hon. Justice Allan B. Halloway and Alusine Sesay Justices of the Supreme Court and Hon. Justice Ivan Sesay of the Court of Appeal. These judges together are trying very serious cases ranging from murder, aggravated robbery, wounding with intent, sexual penetration among others. Prosecuting and defense lawyers from the Law Officer’s Department and the Legal Aid Board have been drawn in by the Judiciary to make meaningful representations. Community radio stations have been effectively used to inform all accused persons on bail, witnesses and jurors to report at the respective venues in Portloko, Moyamba and Sefadu in Kono.
Reports reaching this medium revealed that, the sessions are well attended with one hundred and sixty-one (161) verdicts delivered so far.
This is not the first time the Hon. Chief Justice is making such affirmative move in addressing access to expeditious trial in the Judiciary. It could be recalled that the Hon. Chief Justice visited the Male Correctional Center a month after his approval in Parliament and activated the Prison Court that saw the release of some of the longest serving inmates with indictments through habeas corpus applications.