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Attorney General takes a swipe at Charles Margai

By  | 14 August 2015 at 11:25 | 1280 views

Freetown lawyer and PMDC leader Charles Margai and Attorney General and Minister of Justice Franklyn Kargbo (pictured) have known each other for decades as private lawyers and politicians in Freetown.

Margai is known more as a politician in Sierra Leone while Franklyn Kargbo is a self-effacing and soft-spoken technocrat although his skills as a politician have manifested themselves phenomenally in recent years.

Margai, a former SLPP Attorney General, has been harassing the current office holder since President Koroma recently extended the State of Emergency and eased some restrictions so as to help health authorities eliminate the Ebola virus disease in the country.

Charles Margai wrote letters to Attorney General Franklyn Kargbo protesting the extension and asking under which section of the Constitution the proclamation was made although most Sierra Leoneans in and out of the country welcomed the extension and understood the rationale behind it. Margai’s letters were published in some newspapers with lurid and disrespectful comments.

Apparently irritated by Margai’s political posturing, Attorney General Kargbo first of all reminded Charles Margai that he, Franklyn Kargbo, is "Principal Legal Adviser to the Government" and not adviser to "private individuals or leaders of shell entities of doubtful existence and purpose."

He referred Margai to a printed copy of the Presidential Proclamation on the State of Emergency which can be easily obtained in Freetown.

He expressed surprise at Margai’s "serious and unfortunate misunderstanding/misinterpretation of the law under reference."

Kargbo then delivered the final blow when he noted Margai’s "sad and unsuccessful quest for relevance in the national political discourse."

Most people that know Charles Margai (Ngor Charles to his followers) very well say his performance as a lawyer over the years in Sierra Leone has not been spectacular. They cannot point to any major court case he has ever won in Sierra Leone but he had been a force to reckon with in the SLPP where he had a large following, now diluted since left to form his won party, the PMDC.

He suffered some professional disasters recently when he took over the former Vice President Sam Sumana’s case from lawyer Jenkins-Johnston. For instance, a request from him to have the former Vice President sit among lawyers in court was swiftly rejected by the Supreme Court judges. Former Vice President Sam Sumana is not a lawyer. The case itself has lost steam since Margai took over.

"Margai should stop pontificating on legal matters or matters concerning the Law and concentrate on his role as a well known local politician," a Freetown lawyer told PV.

Charles Margai