Drama unfolded in court today, when the accused leader of Gambia’s main opposition party Ousainou Darboe accuses a Nigerian High Court judge of “infringing the rights of Gambian citizens,” who stand accused before her own court. Emerging as the De Facto, spokesman of the nineteen UDP accused persons, in the absence of a counsel representation in court, the UDP leader questioned the impartiality of Justice Eunice Dada Oshim of the Banjul High Court.
The legal fireworks started in earnest earlier today in court, when Justice Dada asked Darboe, if he was ready to open his defense. Darboe’s terse response was: “The accused persons are not represented throughout the trial and our rights have been infringed even though The Gambia is the birth place of the African Charter. Our rights have been denied by a court that should protect our rights as citizens.”
Mr. Darboe also told the judge that he will not partake in a sham trial. “I will not participate in a trial where my rights have been denied and violated. When I’m convicted then I will say why sentence should not be passed on me,” he posited.
The remaining accused persons have invoked their right to remain silence throughout Darboe’s latest outburst towards the Nigerian mercenary judge. Consequently, Justice Dada declared: “In view of the circumstances, it is clear to this court that the accused persons do not wish to open their defense.”
The defense team has been given seven days to prepare their written address. The case has been adjourned to July 12th for adoption of address.
In another development, the Freedom Newspaper can authoritatively report that the twenty two UDP supporters, who were detained have been granted bail. The detainees were accused of taking part in an opposition protest on May 9th, 2016. Meanwhile, twelve of the alleged protesters are still under state custody.