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Presumed Mad Man Disrupts SCNC Case 

By Francis Tim Mbom

Magistrate Theophilus of the Tiko Magistrate Court, for obvious security reasons, was forced on Wednesday, July 6, to discontinue the case pitting the SCNC Chairman, Chief Ayamba and 23 others.

A presumably mentally deranged man popularly known in Tiko as ‘Commando’, The Post gathered, suddenly broke the serenity of the court and shouted threats, thereby bringing the court’s proceedings to an abrupt end.

James Sabum, one of the accused in the on-going trial of Southern Cameroon National Council, SCNC, activists at the Tiko Court, had just begun telling his own side of the story when the man shot up. "Fourteen months are too much for a man to be underground, this is nonsense…" he said and the Magistrate and the entire court proceedings immediately collapsed. Not even the court orderly, an unarmed police officer, could stop Commando.

The Magistrate immediately ordered the matter to a halt after having asked whether the said man was an SCNC activist. Sabum and others denied any knowledge of him. The Court then rose for a short while after which the Magistrate adjourned the matter to August 17.

Before pronouncing the adjournment, Magistrate Tassi ruled that henceforth the SCNC matter shall be heard in the absence of members of the public. He stated that only those purely concerned with the matter: the accused persons, the prosecution and their witnesses, the defence counsel and other court staff shall sit in on August 17.

Tassi also issued a bench warrant for the arrest of the "deranged" man who had disrupted the proceedings and escaped. But the SCNC activists were visibly not pleased with the decision. Some of them accused the Government of La République du Cameroun of having surreptitiously ferried in the "deranged" man to disrupt the case which they said are very confident of winning.

The activists had been charged to court in 2008 for holding an illegal meeting in Mutengene and for the non-possession of National ID cards. Even the lead defence counsel: Barrister Stanislaus Ajong and Charles Njualem, looked distraught.

They could not understand why the court did not take security measures, and wondered how the police orderly could be in court, unarmed. The Prosecution Counsel, Magistrate Chief Martin Sakwe, admitted that there was need for the court to have some security.

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