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Sunday, June 20, 2021

UDP, BAC chairman vs IEC adjourned

By Bruce Asemota

The twin political cum constitutional matters surrounding the Brikama Area Council chairmanship have finally reached the High Court for adjudication.
The first, being the United Democratic Party petition against the Independent Electoral Commission and three others, is a mandamus application seeking the court jurisdiction to compel the IEC to conduct chairmanship election for Brikama Area Council.

During yesterday sittings on that case, before the presiding Judge, Justice Haddy Roche, the UDP represented by lawyer Borry S Touray indicated that he received the notice of preliminary objection, whilst Justice Roche informed the court that the 4threspondent; Momodou Bojang, the Councilor for Sanyang Ward has not been served and was not present or represented in court.

The matter was therefore adjourned to11th August, 2020 for the IEC, represented by lawyer Kebba Sanyang, to file its brief of argument.
Lawyer Sanyang had earlier told the court that the IEC was served with the writ of summons and statement of claims of the UDP.
In the sister case, BAC chairman Sheiffo Sonko filed an injunction against the IEC asking the High Court to restrain the electoral body from conducting election for the position of Brikama Area Council chairman.

Lawyer Ida Drammeh, legal counsel for Sheriffo Sonko informed the court that IEC has been served with the processes, whilst lawyer Kebba Sanyang intimated that the IEC was ready to defend the case.

The UDP lawyer Borry Touray informed the court of the UDP’s intention to be joined in the suit as a respondent but Justice Haddy Roche told lawyer Borry Touray that she would advise the parties to seek an amicable solution to their differences.
She indicated that Sheriffo Sonko should be loyal and respectful to his party even whilst supporting the government.

She pointed out that being a member of a political party does not necessarily mean that one should oppose the government.
She said the interest of the electorate matters a lot in democratic dispensation rather than the political party.

She advised the media to be cautious on how political issues are reported, attributing to the Sheriffo Sonko imbroglio with the United Democratic Party.
The matter was adjourned to the 5th August, 2020 at 1:00pm for hearing.

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