11 March 2019

Sierra Leone: Parliament Vets Justice Alusine Sesay, 6 Others

Members of the Appointment and the Public Service Committee on Thursday vetted Justice Alusine Sani Sesay and six others to serve as Judges both at Supreme and Appeals Courts.

The other nominees includes: Justice Allan Baami Halloway, Justice Mnaga Fana Deen Tarawally and Justice Sengu Mohamed Koroma, to serve as Supreme Court Judges.

Justice Sulaima Ahamad Bah, Justice Ansumana Ivan Sesay, Justice Miatta Maria Samba and Justice Jamestina A. King, were also appointed by President Bio to serve as Appeals Court Judges.

Speaking in Parliament, Acting Chairman of the Appointment Committee, Hon. Mathew Nyuma, remarked that their business was to vet the nominees and not to embarrass them, adding that, "If we have information about any nominee, we have to sit as one to discuss the issue as it is part of democracy. It is your right to be here before us because you have worked for it, so don't feel embarrassed. Not all Lawyers can serve as judges and not every lawyer can be in the Supreme or Appeals Courts. It is our responsibility to honour you and not to embarrass or do dubious things to you. I can assure you, irrespective of colours, we are here to work in favour of the country just like you do in the court of law. We have to work as partners in democracy as we are all key players in the development of the country.

He regarded the judiciary as one of the building blocks in democracy because it provides interpretation to whatever parliament does.

He noted that they give equal opportunity to all nominees, just as judges hand down judgment based on the evidence before them.

Responding to question as to how he would deal with the many backlog cases both at the Appeals and Supreme Courts, Justice Alusine Sesay promised to expedite them.

"I am one of the few Judges that have worked and covered backlog cases in the entire Sierra Leone before the elections. I went to Moyamba,Bo, Port Loko,Kono and Makeni and covered almost 900 cases single-handedly with my own strategy. When I went to the provinces, I realised that there were cases for which the accused persons had been in custody whilst others had already served their sentences based on their appeal of being guilty. Based on my Criminal law background, I had to sentence them based on the time they had spent ," he said.

He noted that he should be approved because he is competent and would serve as expected.

On her part, Justice Miatta M. Samba said a lot has been done, especially in the area of educating the girl child and commended LAWYERS, Women's Forum and Legal Aid Board for their efforts to addressing women's issues.

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