By Bruce Asemota
Chief Justice Hassan Jallow has directed all high court judges in the country to hear criminal cases in the month of July 2021.
The chief Justice’s directive came in a memo communicated to all high court judges to set aside the month of July for hearing and determination of criminal cases as part of the judiciary’s efforts to clear a backlog of cases particularly those affecting remanded prisoners and those awaiting trial.
However, the chief justice directs that judges may attend to urgent applications or matters in civil cases during the period.
Furthermore, the chief justice implored all high court judges to prepare and submit list of criminal matters scheduled for hearing in the month.
Police detective to appear in court or face contempt
Meanwhile in a separate development, Justice Ebrima Jaiteh of the Banjul High Court has ordered Detective Sergeant 4395 Hamet Sabally to appear before his court on 24 June 2021 in a criminal matter involving the state and one Alagie Ceesay as a witness for cross-examination.
Justice Jaiteh made this order in a ruling during the court sitting after the court noted Sergeant Sabally’s absence and frequent failures to appear before the court and be cross-examined.
Justice Jaiteh said Sergeant Sabally’s failure to appear before his court in eleven days for cross-examination will be deemed contemptuous of the court order and he would be liable for imprisonment.
The judge directed the Inspector General of Police and the West Coast Region police commissioner to ensure that Sergeant Sabally complies with the court order.