Mr Darboe (left) and his supporters in the dock (Photo credit: Freedom Newspaper)
Mr Darboe (left) and his supporters in the dock (Photo credit: Freedom Newspaper)

(JollofNews) – Lawyers representing the embattled leader of the opposition United Democratic Party  (UDP) and 19 of his supporters Thursday urged the high court in Banjul to halt proceedings pending the determination of the constitutionality of some of the charges against them by the Supreme Court.

The opposition members who are currently held at Mile Two Prisons on the outskirts of Banjul after their bail application was dismissed, are slapped with multiple criminal offences including conspiring to commit felony, unlawful assembly, riot, incitement of violence, riotously interfering with traffic, holding a procession without a license and disobeying an order to disperse from an unlawful procession.

They pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Making the application, one of the lead defence lawyers, Amie Bensouda,

Lawyer Amie Bensouda
Lawyer Amie Bensouda

said their motion for a stay of proceeding which was filed to the Supreme Court on 26 May, is seeking for a stay of proceeding on charges of unlawful assembly, riot, holding a procession

without a permit and disobeying an order to disperse from an unlawful procession.

“The Applicants have invoked the Supreme Court’s constitutionality of jurisdiction and they have asked the said court to declare those counts which fall under the Public Order Act as null and void,” Mrs Bensouda said.

“The Supreme Court is the highest court on the land whose decision is binding on this court and when the matter is pending before the Supreme Court this court has no right to proceed with the matter. And if the application is not granted, the application before the Supreme Court will be undermined.”

The matter was adjourned to Monday for the state to respond to the motion.