October 1, 2022

By Janet A. Sesay

Magistrate Marke Ngegba, on Friday 16th October 2020, sent Mariama Sajor Barrie and Ibrahim Bah to the High Court for further trial, as they were alleged to have conspired together to murder Kadija Madinatu Saccoh.

Before the committal, Magistrate Ngegba said the accused were arraigned before the court on two counts of conspiracy to murder and murder, which are contrary to law. He said the police alleged that the accused, on 17th June 2020, conspired together to murder Kadija Madinatu Saccoh. He said that the prosecution called nine witnesses who were cross examined by defense counsels.

Magistrate Ngegba went on that, at the end, the defense counsels made a no case submissions on behalf of both accused. He said, in a preliminary trial, the prosecution need to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt and must also prove the existence of evidence in the matter.

He said that the first prosecution witness, Dr. Simeon Owizz Koroma, said the death of the deceased was due to manual strangulation and shock, which means that the death was not accidental but homicidal.

According to Magistrate Ngegba, Dr Owizz said that the cause of death was unnatural and the manner or mode was homicidal. He continued that the defense counsels, in their no case submission, said that the findings of Dr. Owizz Koroma were not trustworthy, adding that the defence counsels furthered that none of the prosecution witnesses stated that they saw the accused killing the deceased.

He said, on the aspect of conspiracy, both defense counsels said that prosecution did not prove any elements that both accused had an agreement to murder the deceased. He noted, in reply to the no case submissions, the state counsel, Joseph Sesay, told the court that it is the accused that are responsible for the death of the deceased. Meaning the deceased was in the house of both accused before she died.

Magistrate Ngegba added that he had looked at the evidence before him and was satisfied that the accused have a case to answer at the High Court. He therefore committed the matter to the High Court for further trial.

The accused were standing trial on two counts of conspiracy to commit murder, which omissions are contrary to section 4 of the Offences against the Person Act of 1861 and murder, which is contrary to law.