July 2014 Kolofata Attacks: Prosecution Witness List Still Awaited

Defence counsel on October 20, 2016, said they suspected that the State Counsel was playing for time.

 

The Yaounde Military Tribunal on Thursday, October 20, 2016, continued hearing in the matter concerning three Cameroonians and three Nigerians accused of aiding and abetting terrorist acts. These include the July 27, 2014 deadly attacks on Kolofata, in Mayo-Sava Division of the Far North Region during which the wife of Amadou Ali, the Vice Prime Minister, Minister Delegate at the Presidency in charge of Relations with the Assemblies, was abducted.  

The accused are Mustapha Umar, Mohamed Sherif and Ngare Ishaka, all Nigerians; while the Cameroonians are Waziri Isma, Baba Talba and Ramat Moussa, Mayor of Fotokol in Logone and Chari Division of the Far North Region. Presiding was Mrs. Justice Yvonne-Léopoldine Akoa, Vice President of the Yaounde Military Tribunal, who is also judge with the Mfoundi High Court in Yaounde. She was assisted by Col. Jotsa, Lt. Col. Boum Bissoue Raymond and Captain Ndjima Berthelot; while Major Nzie Pierrot Narcisse was State Counsel.

Thursday’s hearing did not make much progress as the State Counsel failed to submit the list of prosecution witnesses as requested in the last sitting. Defence counsel argued that this was tantamount to time-wasting, urging the judge to instruct the State Counsel to do so unfailingly in the next hearing. Mrs. Justice Yvonne-Léopoldine Akoa responded that it was too early to suggest time-wasting, recalling that the trial only opened on June 7, 2016.

Meanwhile, some of the accused complained that they were sick and wanted their confiscated money returned so that they could get treatment. Major Nzie Pierrot said some amounts had earlier been granted to some detainees to solve pressing needs, but pointed out that it was not prudent to hand back the confiscated money which runs into millions. Moreover, he added, all accused are offered free medical care and feeding, thus there was no need for the request. The matter was adjourned to November 17, 2016, for the prosecution to submit the list of witnesses.

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