Salone News

Golley Arrest: British Govt. Intervenes.

By  | 18 January 2006 at 06:03 | 789 views

The British government, through its High Commission in Freetown, Sierra Leone, has expressed concern over the arrest and detention of one of its citizens, Mr. Omrie Golley, former spokesman of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF).

Golley, a businesman and lawyer, was last Thursday picked up by state security in Freetown as he was about to leave for London where until recently he was living with his wife and children.He is of Sierra Leonean descent.

Usually reliable sources in Freetown told the Patriotic Vanguard that the High Commssion, on learning of Golley’s arrest and after consulting the Golley family, immediately contacted prominent lawyer and politician Charles Margai to represent him. Margai has accepted.

Meanwhile, the High Commission, aware of the slowness of the wheels of justice in Sierra Leone, has urged the government there to expedite things so that Golley could get a speedy and fair trial if charged to court.

President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah had earlier told the nation in a radio broadcast that Golley was arrested because he was suspected of engaging in subversive activities, an accusation Golley himself has denied claiming he was in the country to do business and to register a political party. Sources believe he may also have frightened the government when he visited war crimes indictee Sam Hinga Norman.There is speculation that the government wants to know what the two may have discussed.

Due to the intense pressure from the British, the usually very lethargic and carefree Sierra Leone police issued a statement Tuesday in which Inspector General Brima Acha Kamara stated that Golley and three other persons he refused to name were plotting to destabilize the country and that the police will expedite things and prefer charges as soon as possible.

"There is no cause for alarm as the situation is under perfect control", Acha said.

Photos:Omrie Golley, left, and John Michiner, outgoing British High Commissioner in Sierra Leone, right.