The Banjul Magistrates’ Court has dropped a charge of sedition against the managing director of Teranga FM.
The magistrates’ court sitting presided over by Principal Magistrate Momodou Jallow dismissed the charge against Abdoulie Ceesay yesterday at the request of a police prosecutor.
Alpha Badgie, in his application under Section 68 of the Criminal Procedure Code asked the court to withdraw the misdemeanour charge against the beleaguered radio journalist. Badgie submitted that the defendant (Abdoulie Ceesay) is being tried at the high court on the same charge. He said a case file has been sent to the office of the director of Public Prosecution as regards the matter. The prosecutor however, did not pray for the discharge and acquittal of the accused.
Defending counsel for the accused, Combeh Gaye Coker, who also cited Section 68 of the Criminal Procedure Code prayed the court to not only withdraw the charge but also discharge and acquit her client. Coker submitted that the said section is explicit and clear about what the court should do when the prosecution at any stage of the trial withdraws charges before a subordinate court.
In his ruling, the presiding magistrate quashed the charge, discharged and acquitted the accused though he (the accused person) was not present in the court.
Mr Alagie Abdoulie Ceesay is the managing director of Sinchu Alagie-based community radio, Taranga FM. He was arrested on July 17 and dragged before a magistrates’ court in Banjul on August 4 on a charge of seditious intention for allegedly distributing pictures of President Yahya Jammeh showing a gun pointed at the president. He had since been kept under prison custody. Prosecutors alleged that he used his mobile phone and distributed the said photos of the President to one Zainab Koneh and Fatou A Drammeh who are both protocols at the Office of the President. Mr Ceesay, 25, denied any culpability. He has however been denied bail three times at the magistrates’ and high courts.
Courtesy of www.standard.gm