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Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Defense lawyers raise opposition to veil suit

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By Bruce Asemota

Almost all defense lawyers representing the schools and other defendants sued by students for banning the wearing of veil in their premises, have filed preliminary objections to the suit.

Lawyer Rachel Mendy who represented St Therese and St Peters Senior Secondary Schools wants the court to strike out the name of these schools from the suit on the ground that these schools cannot be sued by the applicants.

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Another lawyer, Yassin Senghore representing Charles Jow Memorial Academy challenged the competency of the suit, noting that the suit cannot be determined under the originating summons procedure.

A third one, Lawyer Victoria Andrews representing Reverend JC Faye Memorial objected to the suit on the grounds that the school is non- juristic person and therefore the suit is unmaintainable.

Meanwhile Lawyer Binga D of the Attorney General Chambers who represented Gambia Senior Secondary schools and the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education MOBSE indicated that the state too intend to file a preliminary objection to the suit.

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Lawyer A Mendy representing Grace Billingual School also said similar things .

In another development, during the course of mentioning the case, Lawyer Victoria Andrews raised an objection to the personal appearance of Lawyer Borry S Touray who appeared for the applicants on the ground that his name is not endorsed on the suit.

Responding to this objection, Lawyer B.S.Touray submitted that the suit was prepared by his chambers under his instructions as he is the head of the chambers.

The trial judge, Justice Ebrima Jaiteh overruled the objection and made it clear that Lawyer BS Touray being the head of the chambers that prepared the suit can enter appearance and be heard by the court.

The court stated that lawyers in the same chambers appearing in a case prepared by them or not is immaterial and that as long as they are practising from the same chambers, they can enter appearance personally in the suit.

Justice Jaiteh indicated that lawyers can only hold brief for another lawyer if they are practising from different chambers.

Justice Jaiteh accordingly dismissed the objection raised by lawyer Victoria Andrews and subsequently adjourned the case to 20th and 27 June as well as 4 and 10 July 2023 at 10 am for the hearing of the multiple notices filed by the different lawyers.

The suit has attracted attention of both the Muslim and Christian community some of whom and their members went to court to follow proceedings.

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