News / Africa

South Sudan Treason Hearing Adjourned Again

In court, left to right: former security minister Oyay Deng Ajak, former SPLM secretary general Pagan Amum, former deputy defense minister Majok Atem, former Southern Sudan envoy to the U.S. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.
In court, left to right: former security minister Oyay Deng Ajak, former SPLM secretary general Pagan Amum, former deputy defense minister Majok Atem, former Southern Sudan envoy to the U.S. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.
Charlton Doki
A panel of  judges in Juba on Tuesday adjourned a special court hearing of South Sudan's case against four political detainees suspected of attempting to overthrow President Salva Kiir's government.

The hearing was adjourned because a key prosecution witness, Interior Minister Aleu Ayieny Aleu, failed to appear in court for the second day running.

Aleu was expected to testify against former SPLM secretary general Pagan Amum, former security minister minister Oyay Deng Ajak, former deputy defense minister Majok Atem, and the former envoy of the semi-autonomous southern Sudan government to the United States, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth.

The four accused were detained along with seven other politicians shortly after fighting erupted in Juba on December 15. Kiir has said the fighting was an abortive coup led by former vice president, Riek Machar. All of the accused have denied the charge.
 
The prosecution gave no reason for Aleu’s failure to turn up for the hearing. Lead prosecutor James Mayen asked the court to drop Aleu from the list of state witnesses. 

The five-judge panel granted the request after lead defense counsel Monyluak Alor raised no objections.

On Monday, the judges said Aleu could be arrested if he failed to show up in court. Dropping him from the list of state witnesses would remove the threat of arrest.

The defense asked that testimony given earlier in the case by Aleu be struck from the court records.

“Because there are documents and other evidence that is associated with this witness, and we requested from the court that all evidence brought forth by this witness should be disregarded. So his absence is a good thing for the defense team,”  one of the lawyers of the four accused, Kur Lual, said.

Tuesday's adjournment was the latest delay in the three-week-old hearings. A day after the hearings started, the judges ordered the court adjourned for a week after the prosecution demanded that seven more politicians also stand trial. The seven were detained in December but were released after the signing of a peace agreement in January. 

The prosecution asked for another adjournment when the seven failed to show up in court for the scheduled hearings, but the judges denied the request. They said the four accused had a right to a speedy trial.

The hearings are due to resume on Friday, when the prosecution is expected to call four more witnesses. Defense witnesses are expected to testify next week.

You May Like

Hostage Crisis Could Divide Japan Over Plans to Boost Military

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Monday the government is working closely with the Jordanian government to secure the release of remaining Japanese hostage Kenji Goto More

Video Brussels Shaken as New Greek Leader Challenges Europe’s Austerity Drive

Country's youngest ever PM Alexis Tsipras, 40, sworn in Monday and says he will restore dignity to Greece by ending spending cuts More

Multimedia National Geographic Photo Camps Empower Youth

Annual mentoring program's mission is to give young people a voice to tell their own stories through photography More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Guidous Loki Benjamin from: south sudan
April 05, 2014 9:24 PM
The prayers of the prosecution attorney for asking the court to bring the other seven suspects for trial is unprocedural according to criminal procedure Act 2008. Mayen have forgotten that the Law cannot allow any foreigner to bail any national citicen. The release of the seven suspect is not according to the Law and their case cannot be heard on their absentia, this is what the Law of the land says. Mayen must read the Law before going to court room, otherwise your prayers will be continually be disregard by the special court. God bless south Sudan. Loki


by: Guidous Loki Benjamin from: South Sudan
April 05, 2014 11:36 AM
The prosecution want to delay the speedy of the case by bringing many prosecution witnesses to the court, all the witnesses brought earlier by James Mayen did not fit the court that there's a treason charges against the four suspect, therefore the prosecution should stop bringing more witnesses, because they will make the cases more more weaker.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visiti
X
Aru Pande
January 26, 2015 9:33 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visit

U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video US, EU Threaten New Russia Sanctions Over Ukraine

U.S. President Barack Obama has blamed Russia for an attack by Ukrainian separatists that left dozens dead in the port of Mariupol and cast further doubt on the viability of last year’s cease-fire with the Kyiv government. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington.
Video

Video White House Grapples With Yemen Counterterrorism Strategy

Reports say the U.S. has carried out a drone strike on suspected militants in Yemen, the first after President Barack Obama offered reassurances the U.S. is continuing its counterterrorism operations in the country. The future of those operations has been in question following the collapse last week of Yemen’s government. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Kerry Warns Against Violence in Nigeria Election

US Secretary of State John Kerry visited Nigeria Sunday in a show of the level of concern within the U.S. and the international community over next month’s presidential election. Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Saudi, Yemen Developments Are Sudden Complications for Obama

The death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah and the collapse of Yemen’s government have cast further uncertainty on U.S. efforts to fight militants in the Middle East and also contain Iran’s influence in the region. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports on the new complications facing the Obama administration and its Middle East policy.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid