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Bar Association Briefs UNDP on Legal Aid

Bar Association Briefs UNDP on Legal Aid

As part of its contribution to providing legal aid to society, the Sierra Leone Bar Association last week briefed the UNDP on the status of the Legal Aid Scheme.

At a consultative forum for civil society held at the UNDP office on Wilkinson Road Freetown, members of Sierra Leone Bar Association presented a report to UNDP that explains the status of the Legal Aid Scheme in Sierra Leone covering the month of October.

In the report, it is stated that in October alone, 45 new cases were assigned to legal practitioners.

Of the 45, there are 56 accused persons. 10 among the 45 have been thrown out of court for want of prosecution.

13 persons enjoyed discharge as a result of cases thrown out.

That 2 cases are now at the high court and have had an accused sentenced.

In his statement, the UNDP Court monitoring officer, Walter Neba, said in Africa, the prisons system is soiled with irregularities.

He disclosed that the manner in which the Sierra Leone Prisons operate has no similarity to what is obtained in his country of origin Cameroon.

Walter Neba stresses the need to have records of freed detainees endorsed in their presence rather than doing same at a latter date.

Because records of detainees have not been done accurately, persons whose sentenced was longed expired continued to languish in cells at the Central Prisons.

That it was a fact that persons discharged by the court are at times taken to the Central Prisons and remanded.

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