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LAB appeals to police to reduce numbers behind bars PDF Print E-mail
Written by Expotimes   
Thursday, 16 February 2017 11:12

The Director of the Legal Aid Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles has told the senior officers of the Sierra Leone Police that the correctional centers and cells around the country continue to be full despite the fact that the Board provided legal services to twenty-six thousand (26,000) clients in 2016.

She expressed the concern while addressing the Executive Management Board of the Sierra Leone Police at their weekly meeting at the headquarters of the force on Wednesday, 15 February 2017.

She lamented the police are detaining some suspects for far too long. She urged the police to admit suspects to bail after completing investigations and to avoid imposing stiff bail conditions.

She drew attention to the case of one Francis Osman Mansaray who was held in detention for nearly one month in Makeni before he was transferred to the Criminal Investigations Department headquarters in Freetown where he is still being held.  

She also drew attention to variations in bail and sentencing. ‘We have had cases of different bail conditions for the same offence,’ she said. ‘This is why we are calling for the release of the new bail and sentencing policy without any further delay.’

Ms. Carlton-Hanciles also called on the police to issue an official statement on civil matters that shouldnot be handled by police. Allaying fears of the police, sheassuredthem that her staff know they shouldnot interfere with investigations. ‘We monitor the police to ensure investigations are consistent with the law and human rights; we do not interfere with the work of the police,’ she stressed.

Responding to an appeal from the Inspector General of Police (IG), Francis Munu not to provide legal assistance to armed robbers who have become notorious for reoffending, Ms. Carlton-Hancilessaid the scheme does not provide assistance to repeat offenders with overwhelming evidence against them. ‘A lawyer is as good as his case,’ she maintained. IG Munu had said earlier on that they detain armed robbers in order to protect society.

‘The important thing to note here is that, victims of armed robberyalso form part of the clientele of the Board,’ she said. ”People should also know that we have lost cases in court. Unfortunately, this story is not being told.’

Ms. Carlton-Hanciles also called on the police to conduct investigations in a thorough manner so that suspects are not charged with the wrong offence. ‘Those who steal should not be charged with the more serious offence of robbery with aggravation,’ she stressed. ‘There is no point charging someone with a more serious offence when the ingredients to prove the case are non-existent.’

Ms. Carlton-Hanciles assured the police that the Board has no interest in infringing on the mandate of any institution not least the Police. ‘We want to ensure there is synergy between our two institutions so that we can continue to refer matters between our two institutions,’she said.

Ms. Carlton-Hanciles intimated the police that the scheme now has a presence in every district in the country.  She disclosed that the Paralegals are running ADR clinics in these districts. ‘These efforts will reduce the pressure on the police,’ she said.

The Inspector General, FrancisMunu blamed the negative views people hold about the police on the lack of legal education. He noted that when the police refuse to intervene on matters of land encroachment and debts, people view them unfavorably even though it is the right thing to do. 

‘When the police talk to the other party in a matter in the interest of fair hearing, people interpret it negatively,’ he said.  IG Munu argued that legal education by paralegals will educate people on issues of law and the justice system. This, in his view, will help them understand the work of the police and as such make an informed judgement on their work.

Both parties agreed to collaborate to ensure hardcore criminals do not benefit from Presidential Pardons after it emerged someprison inmates have impersonated those convicted on less serious offences to benefit from the Pardons. It was suggested that officers should be present at the time when beneficiaries of Presidential Pardons are released from prison to prevent any recurrence.

 

 

Editorial

2016 Global Peace Conference to be held in Freetown---as IPRA 50th Birthday confab ends in Istanbul

 

The 26th biennal conference of the Internatonal Peace Research Association (IPRA) is billed to take place in  Freetown, Sierra Leone in November 2016, marking the second time Africa has hosted the conference since the founding of IPRA in 1964. This was announced following the re-election of  the two IPRA Secretaries-general, Dr Ibrahim Seaga Shaw (pictured) and Dr Nesrin Kenar, who co-ordinated the 25th  IPRA conference in Turkey,  at the organisation’s administrative meeting on August 14 during the 25th  IPRA  conference in Istanbul  to serve a second term of two years.

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Business News

Sierra Leone Embassy & Beijing Chamber Of Commerce for Cultural Industries Launch China-Sierra Leone Hand-In-Hand International Foundation

The Sierra Leone Embassy in China in collaboration with the Beijing Chamber of Commerce for Cultural Industries on Saturday 17th June, 2017 launched the China-Sierra Leone Hand-in-Hand International Foundation with a view of cultivating good citizenship by enhancing social, environmental, cultural and economic wellbeing of communities in Sierra Leone.

It also will among others, serve as a bridge of friendship between the two nations in a bid to promote international culture and art exchanges and contribute to economic development.

Speaking at the event, Madam Kumba Alice Momoh, the embassy’s Chargé d'Affaires   referred to the launch of the China-Sierra Leone Hand-In-Hand International Foundation as “the birth of a new era during a period that Sierra Leone is celebrating 46 years of bilateral relationship with China”

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Media News

44 Journalists in Beijing for China Development Studies and Media Exchange

The 4th session of the China Africa Press Center (CAPC) Program hosted by the China Public Diplomacy Association (CPDA) was officially launched on Wednesday 1st March 2017 in Beijing, China. This year’s event is running simultaneously with the China South Asia Center 2017 program. Both programs brought together forty-four journalists from Africa and South Asia.

The program you will give journalists the opportunity to cover major domestic and international events in China such as the upcoming Two Sessions, i.e, the 5th Session of the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) and the 5th Session of the 12th National Committee of the Chinese

People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) (similar to Parliamentary sessions in many countries) in March, the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in May and the 9th BRICS Summit in Autumn this year.

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Commentary

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT

A PASSIONATE LETTER TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT:  44TH EDITION

REVIEWING THE JUNE 2017 ECOWAS SUMMIT
 Your Excellency Sir,
 It’s been six months since I subscribed to my usual publications of this piece. And this is primarily because I have been out of the country for the entire period, and as such would not normally objectively tender a subscription. I do apologize to my readers for this. So having being in Monrovia, Liberia for the recently concluded ECOWAS Summit, I would like to do some analysis on such a historic august body and gathering of this sub-Saharan/West African region.
 
In resume, among other crucial achievements, ECOWAS, through its military apparatus, ECOMOG, played very sacrificial and invaluable roles in bringing peace, security and democratic governance to both Sierra Leone and Liberia during their past civil wars, and most recently ensuring that the Gambian people’s democratic change of government from the notorious dictatorial twenty seven years regime of Yaya Jarmeh, to the current government of President Adama Barrow, through their tactical robust intervention, overseen by President Helen JohnsonSirleaf of Liberia and other ECOWAS Presidents/actors, was enforced. Furthermore, ECOWAS has also spearheaded the enactment of several socio-political, advocacy and economic treaties in the sub region.
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View Point

WHY SIERRA LEONEANS HATE PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT

Honestly speaking Sierra Leoneans are well known for their hospitality all over the world, especially in Africa. But ironically many of them hate each other. But they love foreigners. They have high respect for strangers. But unfortunately they do not have respect among themselves. You can attest this to what is happening in the social media. Where they are showing their pull him down (PhD) syndrome. By castigating their compatriots unnecessarily. Some of them just because of jealousy and envious evil spirit they possess. They prefer to promote foreigners than their own brothers and sisters both in and out of the country.

Day in day out they are insulting each other.They are using all sorts of vulgar languages against each other. And even their own highly respected president in the world, President Ernest Bai Koroma they are insulting him openly. Therefore, it is an open secret that many Sierra Leoneans are not well cultured.

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News - Press Release

WHO Director-General elect welcomes new funding for polio eradication

 World Health Organization Director-General elect, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has welcomed contributions and pledges of US$1.2 billion for the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. The pledges were made at the Rotary Convention in Atlanta, USA which is being attended by 32 000 Rotarians from around the world. 

“It is humbling to see again the power of this incredible global partnership to generate funding to fight one of the world’s most horrible and debilitating diseases,” said Dr Tedros.

 

 

A proportion of the money pledged will help WHO fund disease surveillance in more than 70 countries and enable it to provide expertise to help countries vaccinate 450 million children per year against polio. The Organization will also provide guidance on vaccination policy and participate in research into vaccine delivery methods, operational tactics and other approaches that can help accelerate eradication.

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Society -Local News

WAI-SL rescues hermaphrodite …more support needed

Women Against inhumanities Sierra Leone (WAI-SL), has over the past months embarked on fundraising for the surgery of Ibrahim Sorie Karama a hermaphrodite. The founder and CEO of Women Against inhumanities Sierra Leone (WAI-SL), Miss Michaella Sallu with her team are pleased to inform the general public both home and abroad that surgery has been successfully done on Ibrahim Sorie Kamara the 16 year old boy that was popularly seen on social media having breast enlargement.

The Bilateral Subcutaneous Mastectomy surgery was done on the 6th of June 2017 at the Holy Spirit hospital Makeni free of charge by a team of 5 surgeons from Ghana headed by Dr. Albert Painsil and assisted by our Sierra Leonean brother Dr. Abdul Jalloh with fund from Resurge Africa UK.

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Development

Sierra Leone Collateral Registry to improve access to finance for MSMEs

Minister of Finance and Economic Development and Governor of the Central Bank Monday (June 12) jointly launched the Sierra Leone Collateral Registry, an electronic public database holding information on security interests in movable property.

 

The Registry is an initiative of the Bank of Sierra Leone with technical and financial support provided by the World Bank Group to improve access to finance, particularly for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). Established under Part II of the Borrowers and Lenders Act, the Registry is a web based system that allows lenders to search for any pre-existing security interests over movable assets provided as collateral. It facilitates the use of movable assets as collateral that may remain in possession or control of the borrowers and thereby improves access to secured finance.

 

 

 

Movable assets are the main type of collateral that MSMEs, especially those in developing countries, can encumber to obtain financing. Given opportunities in agribusiness among others, the Collateral Registry regime allows farmers and entrepreneurs to unlock significant sources of capital with assets that would otherwise not be looked at by lenders as potential collateral.

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Politics

APC Secretary General Ambassador Yansaneh announces the resolutions at the June 1st NAC Meeting
EBK endorsed to continue as Chairman and Leader,continue to unite and transition the party.
 
Selection or Endorsement of Presidential Candidate who will appoint a Running Mate to be endorsed by NAC.
 
National Executive Officers must have served at regional,district or constituency level to be qualified for selection or election.
 
Must n paid up and active in the last 10 years and paid up for 7 years . 
 
Will sign an undertaken to support whoever is selected or endorsed . 
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