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Lawyers for jailed Machar’s spokesperson pullout over unfair trial


January 18, 2018 (JUBA)-The defence team for the former spokesperson of the former first vice president turned rebel leader Riek Machar announced withdrawal from the case, citing unfair trial despite the recent signing of a cessation of hostilities.

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James Gatdet Dak, Riek Machar’s spokesperson ’Reuters photo)

The lead defence lawyer Monyuak Alor Kuol told Sudan Tribune on Thursday that they decided to pull from the process because of “unfair trial.”

James Gatdet Dak was deported to Juba by Kenyan authorities in November 2016 where he has since been in detention after the government prosecutor brought treason charges and other serious charges against him.

Kuol, his defence lawyers, says the charges brought his client were political crimes to be addressed through political processes.

“We decided to leave the trial process because of some reasons. One of the main reasons is that the trial process is unfair. Number two the charges levelled against James were purely political crimes. They are not criminal offences against the state. Thirdly, the procedures are not fair. We have a problem with the procedures followed by the prosecution,” explained Kuol.

He said his client is a political detainee to be released under Article 8 of the signed ceasefire agreement that states that all political detainees should be released after it was signed.

"Within 72 hours of the signing of this Agreement, the Parties shall submit to the ICRC a complete list of PoWs, and all political prisoners and detainees, and released them within 14 days," provides the cessation of hostilities agreement signed on 21 December 2017.

“James is a political detainee but the prosecution team decided to go ahead with the trial of James Gatdet despite being aware of the provision of the ceasefire agreement," he said

"Because of this lack of unfairness, we decided to pull out from prosecution,” he stressed.

Kuol accused the prosecution and the ministry of justice of ignoring the provisions of the cessation of hostilities agreement.

” We want the world to know the issue. The agreement is being monitored, so the monitors will look into it. The problem is not the court,” he added.


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  • 18 January 23:37, by Eyez

    Defence Team!

    You have demonstrated maturity in stating the whole truth, because, first of all, the CoH stipulates the release of all Political Prisoners, without any conditions.

    Am not an I.O, but, I applaude that, they did follow the agreement and already over handed POWs to the Red Cross, so why not the government?

    Kiir and JCE is turning our law courts into Kangaroo courts, shame!


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    • 18 January 23:41, by Eyez

      Correction!...meant, ’handed over’ not the way around.


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    • 19 January 04:02, by Nairobimitot

      This guy should be trialed even if the trail is unfair. But one thing I know about the SPLM party is that they forgive people, and this is SPLM culture. They always forgive people who are suspected.

      What I think is guy should be forgiving and let go by the president because he is not responsible for all mess. All the confusion of this country happened on the top to the bottom, Higher ranking to the lower ranking.

      He should be trialed and released for the reconciliation. One day, South Sudanese will overcome and walk together. But they first have to fight each other and learn from the suffering and wars.

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      • 19 January 05:35, by Jubaa5

        It is spelled tried or trial not trialed ,you must go back to school Dinka man ,you live in kenya and not attending class,this is international webside ,please stop writting broken english here,at the end of the day this man will be released god is great kenya is to blame for this man jailed Machar’s spokesperson .

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        • 19 January 12:15, by Nairobimitot

          Stop writing with running on sentence. I have not seen an English professor that writes with running-on sentences.

          For my misspelled, It was just a mistake; it wasn’t like I do not speak proper English, it was just, an error. I am sure you make the error all the times.

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    • 19 January 05:51, by Jubaa5

      President salva kiir do not repect the peace agreement.
      South Sudanese rights group call both parties to release all political detainees including Machar’s spokesperson.The Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), has officially admitted for the first time it is holding only 4 prisoners of war captured during four years of conflict the rest of 500 died in contaniners mostly of heat and hunger.

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    • 19 January 09:07, by Landlord

      All south Sudanese including the government regretting cessation from Sudan. this country will not stabilize in
      the hands of this gangs. How does the government want this country to be exactly?

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  • 19 January 05:54, by William

    There was no reason for keeping this guy in prison. They suppose to let him go. Even to give him position. He did nothing wrong. He was just spokesman that all. He is South Sudanese. Those who killed hundreds are now having high positions and that is crimes. Please let him go to his family. You are wasting your time.

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    • 19 January 08:02, by jubaone

      The tragedy is, highly placed nyagateen like Taban, Koang Ruai and all other "Tabanists" in TGoNU cant use their positions to free James Gatdet like the way the Kiirminal has freed several jienge political prisoners. These nuer nyagateen are their own enemies, they never cared for the thousands slaugheterd in 2013, how much will they then care for only one like Gatdet?

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      • 19 January 08:19, by Resolution

        Dear Kuol,
        exposing all scenario on the media is very wonderful job that only few people can do within system of government of Juba. you already passed the info to both international and local and they know where to go if it happen they kill him.

        long live KUOL.
        Long live south sudan

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  • 19 January 10:35, by Lenin Bull

    The government in Juba should release all political detainees it has under its custody in Juba and elsewhere in the country. We want peace in 2018 all over the country. Let James Gadet go free please. He is no threat to anyone. In fact, he has already learned his lesson and will never misbehave again.

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  • 19 January 10:41, by Lenin Bull

    If the same government released Riek Machar on the 10th of July 2016 after capturing him wholesome during J1 battle, released Pagan Amum, Deng Alor, Majak Agoot, Gieer Chuang, John Luk Jok, etc. What is or who is James Gadet? Look, SPLA-IO is busy releasing sham prisoners of war or its so called political detainees. This is a ploy to portray itself as being morally superior to the government.

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  • 19 January 10:47, by Lenin Bull

    SPLA-IO called some few villagers living in territories its controlled trained them for one or two days to accept being political detainees of SPLA-IO and lie that they have been released and are thankful to SPLA-IO leadership. Why don’t you read between the line guys. This is war wits and tactics. When did SPLA-IO war dogs ever spared any single soul that fell into their deadly hands?

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  • 19 January 10:52, by Lenin Bull

    Where are the administrative/executive directors that the SPLA-IO captured in Akobo,and Nyirol, Nasir, Bentiu, Maiwut, Longichuk, Ulang, etc in 2013/2014? Where are the 300 SPLA soldiers that the SPLA-Io captured along with the barge in 2015 between Adog port and Juaibor? Where are the thousands of wives and children of Dinka SPLA soldiers which the war caught in Nuer territories in 2013 to date?

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    • 19 January 13:31, by choldit

      Are u really happy serving the JCE in their tribal leadership? Who do u think they think u are? Seriously, take a minute and think about who they think u are?

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    • 19 January 13:34, by Resolution

      Where are the thousands of wives and children of Dinka SPLA soldiers which the war caught in Nuer territories in 2013 to date? SORRY DEAR, DINKAS are not special in south Sudan, the only option for south Sudanese is peace in the year 2018.

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