Powerful analyses from Sierra Leoneans on the dismantling of the jury system by the SLPP

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*The Dismantling of the Juror System is a Betrayal of Democratic Representation*

*By: Robin Jack Barbara Kamara*
P. R. O Constituency 128

The recent decision to abolish the juror system from our legal framework is a stark manifestation of parliamentary failure to represent the will and interests of the people. This move, driven by weak and self-serving motives, undermines the very foundation of our democratic principles.

The role of Members of Parliament is to serve as the voice of their constituents, to ensuring that the laws and policies enacted reflect the collective will and protect the rights of the populace. The removal of the juror system a cornerstone of fair and participatory justice demonstrates a gross abdication of this responsibility. By eliminating this mechanism, which allows ordinary citizens to partake in the judicial process, MPs have weakened the justice system’s transparency and accountability.

One of the most troubling aspects of this development is the silence of the opposition MPs from the All People’s Congress (APC). Their failure to alert the public before the juror system was expunged from our law books raises serious questions about their commitment to their constituents. This silence can be interpreted as a betrayal, undermining the trust placed in them by the electorate. It suggests a troubling alignment with the interests of the ruling party, rather than a staunch defense of democratic values and public interests.

The repercussions of this legislative change are profound and far-reaching. Without a juror system:

The removal of the juror representation leads this nation in jeopardy. To mention but few:- the removal of the juror system erodes public confident ,Reduced Civic Engagement, Potential for Increased Corruption,
,Negative Impact on Opposition Politicians.

This is a call for national concern.
The abolition of the juror system should serve as a wake-up call to the electorate. It is imperative that we hold our representatives accountable and demand transparency and integrity in legislative processes. Opposition MPs, particularly from the APC, must be urged to take a stand against such undemocratic practices and work tirelessly to restore and protect the rights of their constituents.

The juror system’s removal is not just a legal alteration; it is a significant blow to our democracy. As citizens, we must remain vigilant and proactive in safeguarding our rights and ensuring that our representatives truly serve our best interests.

Abolishing Jury Trial is Wrong, Wrong and Wrong Again and Again

By Pastor Mohamed Sesay

Much of what I have read in the new Criminal Procedure Act, are good for country.

But abolishing Jury Trial is not good for country and citizens and all and sundry.

Before going further, I must beg HE President Bio not to be tempted to sign the New CPA until the Abolishment of Jury Trial is removed from the text.

There are repercussions if Jury Trial is abolished which shall surely affect citizens in future and President Bio will not want to be judged by posterity to have signed into law something which could be used in future against the innocents.

What President Bio must know is that many of our judges are members Freemasonry Lodge and other secret societies.

Leaving those people on their own in cases of capital offences, could allow for the guilty to walk free and for the innocents to suffer for capital crimes they never committed.

Why the Jury System in the first place? For not allowing one person to decide the fate of accused persons whether for good or bad.

For a judge not to be the one person that caused the suffering of even the guilty.

In Jury Trials the judge sits as the judge of law and the jurors as the judges of fact.

If Jury Trial is abolished means a judge will now sit as judge and jury at the same time which could be totally unfair for both accused persons and the victims.

There have been many instances in this country where jurors defy the direction of judges to either acquit or discharge or to convict because those judges of fact knew in their minds that those directives were the wrong ones.

In the case of Inspector Newlove and other in which Inspector Newlove and another detective were accused of killing a man in their custody in Makeni, the trial judge then, in his summary, was directly telling the jurors to find the accused persons guilty but they came out with a ‘not guilty’ verdict because they knew in their minds that those two accused persons never killed the suspect who, according to court records, was mercilessly beaten by a mob when he was caught robbing a house.

To know that the judge then was biased, after the jurors then made their “not guilty” pronouncement, the judge sat for over five minutes looking up the sky before he uttered the following words: “You people are free today but you’re going to meet a greater judge than me Who will judge you”.

This means that if that judge was sitting alone without jurors he could have found those innocent men guilty and gleefully sentenced them to death.

The defence counsel then, late Titus Fewry did prove his case beyond all reasonable doubt that his clients were innocent and the jurors agreed with him.

Trial by Juror must remain in the CPA forever to save this country from wicked elements who will be using their authorities to bend the law and send the innocents to prison unfairly and allow the guilty to walk free because of connections.

Children will be raped by evil perverts but they will walk free because of bent judges and those children will be left to suffer everlasting trauma while their perpetrators will brag about their evils.

President Bio must not allow those advocating for the Abolishment of Jury Trial to leave an indelible stain on his name through the doings of other people in future.

Let Jury Trial remain for all capital offences.


*by Mahmud Tim Kargbo*

*Sunday, 7th July, 2024*


Sierra Leone stands at a crossroads in its judicial system, facing a contentious debate over the potential abolition of trial by jury. This proposed change raises serious concerns and uncertainties about the impact on justice, fairness, and impartiality in a country where the independence of the judiciary can be compromised by political interference and external pressures. Understanding the disadvantages of abolishing trial by jury is crucial in assessing the potential consequences for the Sierra Leone justice system.

One of the primary disadvantages of eliminating trial by jury is the erosion of a key safeguard for individual rights and freedoms. Juries play a vital role in ensuring a fair and unbiased trial, as they represent a cross-section of society and provide a diversity of perspectives in reaching a verdict. Without a jury, the decision-making power is concentrated in the hands of a single judge, potentially increasing the risk of subjective judgments and miscarriages of justice.

In a country like Sierra Leone, where the judiciary may face external influences and political pressure, the absence of a jury system could further exacerbate vulnerabilities to undue interference. Judges, who are appointed and potentially swayed by political powers, may lack the same level of independence and neutrality as a jury, leading to concerns about impartiality and the fair administration of justice.

Moreover, abolishing trial by jury may have detrimental effects on public trust and confidence in the judicial system. Juries are often seen as a symbol of democracy and citizen participation in the legal process, fostering transparency and accountability in court proceedings. The removal of juries could alienate the public and create perceptions of an opaque and undemocratic justice system, further undermining the rule of law and social cohesion.

Additionally, the abolition of trial by jury could result in a loss of community representation and local knowledge in legal proceedings. Juries bring diverse perspectives, life experiences, and common sense reasoning to decision-making, enriching the trial process with a broader understanding of the facts and circumstances of a case. Their absence may lead to a disconnect between the legal system and the community it serves, potentially diminishing the effectiveness and legitimacy of judicial outcomes.

In a country like Sierra Leone, where the judiciary faces challenges of corruption, inefficiency, and external influences, preserving the institution of trial by jury is crucial for upholding constitutional rights, ensuring accountability, and maintaining public confidence in the justice system. While reforms and improvements may be necessary to address systemic issues, abolishing trial by jury without addressing underlying governance and judicial integrity concerns could have far-reaching and detrimental consequences for the rule of law and access to justice in the country.

The potential abolition of trial by jury in Sierra Leone must be approached with caution and careful consideration of the disadvantages and risks involved. Maintaining the institution of trial by jury is essential for safeguarding fundamental rights, ensuring judicial independence, and promoting public trust in the legal system. Any proposed reforms should prioritise strengthening and enhancing the existing jury system, rather than dismantling a critical component of the justice system that serves as a bulwark against injustice and external influences. Only through a comprehensive and transparent approach to legal reform can Sierra Leone uphold the principles of justice, fairness, and accountability for all its citizens.

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