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Court sets eight community chiefs free in Jonglei

By Deng Ghai Deng

A court in Jonglei State capital Bor on Thursday dismissed a case against eight community chiefs who were arrested by the police in Bor town two weeks ago and charged with the crimes against the State including treason, sedition and sabotage.  

Speaking to media yesterday, Justice John Yel, the presiding judge at the Jonglei State High Court said that it is only the president of the country that is allowed by the law to confirm charges of crimes against the state and then a special court be formed by the chief justice. 

“The chiefs were accused of the crimes against the state under section 66 of the Penal Code Act 2008. In this case there are procedures followed and requirement for itto proceed. It is the president of the republic of South Sudan who can give a permission for that and then the chief Justice form a special court. These requirements have not been met and the court made a decision and dismissed the case under section 44 read together with section 226 of the criminal procedure act 2008,”  judgeYel said.

He added thatthe traditional chiefs were set free and both parties had right to make an appeal within 15 days.The chiefs were set free because the prosecution had not fulfilled the requirements that were needed under section 44 for the accusations against anybody under section sixty-six.

Meanwhile, Paramount Chief Deng Mabur, welcomed the court ruling and said that some members of the Jonglei state executives maliciously targeted them.

“The court has dismissed the case against us and set us free. We are happy with the Court ruling because there was no reason to humiliate us. The commissioner is appointment as the leader of the community if there are differences with him the state government should facilitate the dialogue to resolve the matter,”Mabur said

However, Ayii Deng, the prosecution lawyer said that he would present the court ruling to Jonglei State government for the decision on whether to appeal or not.

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