The Gambia Court of Appeal presided over by Justices A.O. Adegoke, Awa Bah and Edrissa Fafa Mbai Thursday made the ruling that Lawyer Ousainou Darboe and 18 others were granted bail base on public interest.
Mr Darboe and Co where released on bail last Monday after almost five months in jail after serving three years jail term each.
“The fact submitted by the defense counsel Amie Bensouda is convincing enough because is in the interest of public to grant bail and denial of which is a threat to national security” Justice Awa Bah told the court.
Justice A.O. Adegoke in his ruling quoted section 12 (a) of The Gambia Court of Appeal. He told the court that the fact that the first appellant Ousainou Darboe constitutes an integral part of the coalition that won the recent presidential election is compelling reason to grant bail.
The matter was adjourned till 6 March, for adoption of briefs.
The appellents are Ousainou Darboe, Kemeseng Jammeh, Femi Peters, Lamin Dibba, Lamin Jatta, Yaya Bah, Babucarr Camara, Fakebba Colley, Ismaila Ceesay, Momodou Fatty, Dodou Ceesay, Samba Kinteh, Momodou Manneh, Nfamara Kuyateh, Lamin Njie, Yaya Jammeh, Momodou L.K. Sanneh, Massanneh Lalo Jawla, Fanta Darboe and Junkuna Suso.
It could be recalled that Mr Darboe and Co were arrested on April 16th after staging a peaceful protest demanding the release, dead or alive of the party youth leader Solo Sandeng who was arrested in an earlier April 14 protest for demanding electoral reforms. He was allegedly tortured and died under state custody.
They were all charged with seven counts of unlawful assembly, riot, incitement of violence, riotously interfering with traffic, holding a procession without a license, disobeying an order to disperse from an unlawful procession and conspiracy.
They were denied bail and remanded in the state central prison of Mile II until on July 21st, 2016, when they where convicted and sentenced to serve 3 years in prison consecutively by Nigerian machinery judge Justice Eunice O Dada.