By Elkass Sannoh
Fifty-Eight (58) persons, who were arrested for riotous conduct and its related offences on the 28th March, 2022 during a riot which prevented commercial and private vehicles, commercial tricycles and motor bikes from plying the streets of Freetown, were brought before the Magistrate Court No. 1 on Ross Road in the East End of Freetown.
Among those accused persons were pupils from the Sierra Leone Muslim Congress Secondary School. They appeared in Court on the 30th March, 2022, arraigned before Magistrate Wilbri John.
Before the Court Sessions they were taken to the Cells (holding centers prepared by the Judiciary of Sierra Leone to be used by the correctional centers and the Sierra Leone Police) at Ross Road Magistrates’ Courts. Whilst in detention, some accused persons fainted due to suffocation. Two were asthmatic, according to medical report.
When they fainted, the others started shouting which attracted public attention. They were brought out and family members started crying that their children are dead. The scene became chaotic.
Later, the Magistrate called up the case and they were all granted bail. Two Sureties, Ibrahim Cole, the Principal for the Junior Secondary School Section and Alhaji Mohamed Sallieu Bangura, the Principal for the Senior Secondary School Section facilitated the process to ensure that the bail conditions were fulfilled. They were all contacted and confirmed that all the pupils later recovered in sound health after going through effective treatment.
“I will authoritatively tell you that no pupil died but I can also assure you that those who fainted recovered the same day,” said Ibrahim Cole, the Principal for the Junior Secondary School Section, Sierra Leone Muslim Congress School, adding that, “I even addressed them this morning at the school assembly ground. That social media video claiming that one of our pupils died is false and untrue.”
The school authorities called on members of the public to visit them for further clarification instead of spreading false rumor that a pupil died in Court.
The general public is advised to dismiss the fake social media reports and videos.