Magistrate Threatens to Charge Counsel with Contempt

Magistrate Threatens to Charge Counsel with Contempt

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Principal Magistrate Hilary Abeke of the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court last Thursday threatened to slam a charge of contempt on Lawyer Lubna Farage if she decided to angrily walk out of his court room.

Magistrate Abeke made the statement following an argument with counsel Farage over a civil case he (Magistrate Abeke) was presiding over.

Lawyer Farage sought for the magistrate to attend to her client’s case before he (magistrate) could proceed with fresh matters but Abeke told her to allow him continue with fresh matters before he could read his ruling on the civil case of which Farage is defending a party.

Lawyer Farage however insisted the court attended to her client’s case first, saying she could not sit and wait while her time was being wasted.

This formed an argument between the magistrate and the lawyer, who angrily took her hand bag and walked towards the courtroom door but the magistrate threatened to charge her with contempt of court should she angrily walk out of the court.  “Sit down! sit down! counsel sit down! If you should walk out of this court, I will give you contempt and you shall come back and explain yourself,” Magistrate Abeke shouted on Farage.

Lawyer Farage heeded to the magistrate’s call, she came back to her seat. Magistrate Abeke was mute for a minute before the court registrar called for the rising of the court.

by Meita Touray