LAND SCANDAL Former Acting Chief Justice “dragged” To APPEAL COURTJune 6, 2016
Leave was sought and granted outside time and appeal filed against a High Court Judgment relating to the ownership of a parcel of land that situates at Adonkia, which was in dispute between the former acting Chief Justice, Mr. Valesius Thomas and Ibrahim Essa Kamara. Both litigants had laid claims on this land and a Judgment was delivered in favour of the former acting Chief Justice when he was serving as the Country’s Head of the Judiciary and acting Chief Justice.
It would be recalled that Mr. Ibrahim Essa Sesay who was resident in the United States of America claimed to have bought the nine-plot- of land in the 1990s when he was an employee of Sierratel, by then it was called SLET, whilst the former acting Chief Justice claimed to have bought his around 2000s and both of them have conveyances.
The matter of ownership was first brought to the High Court, when Judgment was delivered in favour of Mr. Valesius Thomas. His argument had been that Mr. Ibrahim Essa Kamara had laid claims on the wrong plot of land despite it has been established by government surveyors that the two lands are owned separately.
But while the former acting Chief Justice had accused Mr. Ibrahim Essa Kamara of laying wrong claims, Mr. Kamara on the other hand is saying that he is the legitimate owner of the nine-plot-of- land that the former acting Chief Justice had grabbed and sold part of it to the Seventh Day Adventist Mission(SDA) for a Church Project.
The matter had rolled on for months, which propelled Mr. Ibrahim Essa Kamara to abandon his United States of America Communication job to come home and fight for what he called his “lawful right and property”.
Few months after his arrival in Freetown, he received the first baptism of fire when an allegation of threatening remarks was leveled against him by the former acting Chief Justice. He was charged to court and detained for one week at the Pademba Road Maximum Prison and later granted bail by Magistrate Fidawa when he made his second appearance. The baptism of fire and injustice suffered did not scare him away to run from what he called the “fight for his property”
Mr. Kamara’s second disappointment was when every law firm contacted to file an appeal on his behalf refused to do so on the grounds that they cannot file a suit or appeal against their acting Chief Justice especially when he was in office. The only law firm that accepted his brief is that, which is headed by Lawyer Charles Margai, who having perused the file came to realize that the Judgment delivered was a betrayal of legal facts and law and that it was done on certain consideration which is appealable.
The matter of threatening remarks at the Magistrate Court is being tried by Dr. Abu Bakarr Bineh and several appearances have been made that are currently leading to the conclusion of the matter. Lawyer Charles Margai is also the legal representative of the accused in this matter.
While waiting for date from the Appeal Court, Mr. Ibrahim Essa Kamara received a shocking surprise when a notice for Contempt Proceeding was served on him for paying a visit to his plot of land and erecting a temporal structure on it. The notice was from Yada Williams and Associates on behalf of the former acting Chief Justice as Plaintiff. As if that was not all, the determination to send him behind bars set in motion a lobbying exercise. According to judicial sources, Justice Sesay was being lobbied to sign a Warrant of Arrest in favour of the Plaintiff for the apprehension and detention of Mr. Ibrahim Essa Kamara on the pretext that he violated the Judgment and Order of the High Court. But considering the inhuman treatment that had already been meted out on the Defendant, Ibrahim Essa Kamara, Justice Sesay report states, refused to sign the Warrant of Arrest and advised that since a date had been fixed by the Court of Appeal; he warned that both parties should remain calm and wait for the hearing and determination of the matter.
This did not seem to go down well with the former acting Chief Justice who wants to use the Court to punish and further intimidate the Defendant.
The Appeal Court will listen to the parties on 28th April, 2016 and will decide who is the legitimate owner of the nine-plot-of land at Adonkia . The case of threatening remarks at the Magistrate Court comes up for hearing next week.