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Supreme Court Dismisses Marafa Appeal 

By Nelen Tambe

CameroonPostline.com — The Supreme Court has dismissed Marafa Hamidou Yaya’s appeal for the court to revoke the temporary detention he is in. The presiding judge, Justice Marc Ateba Ombela, rejected the petition on November 26 in Yaounde during the opening of a special session of the Supreme Court.

The court hearing of the appeal was based on sentences levied on the former Government officials for embezzling public funds. According to the Rapporteur, the Former Minister of Territorial Administration and Decentralisation, Marafa Hamidou Yaya, was temporarily detained as ruled by the Mfoundi High Court on April 16, 2012.

He added that on September 22, of the same year, Marafa was accused of embezzling US 29 million Dollars worth of public funds. With this, the Rapporteur concluded that the accused appealed for the temporary detention to be uplifted is baseless. But for the defence lawyer, the court can not judge someone that is innocent. To him, the presiding judge should pass a ruling that will make people and lawyers know that there are judges in the country.
 

The accused, Marafa, said his condemnation was without proof after re-echoing what the first President of the Supreme Court once said that “Magistrates, in whatever the situation they find themselves, have to operate in all neutrality,” he noted. “I am innocent and I have the confidence that the judgment to be taken will be without sides and passion. But how will I have confidence, when judgment is sometimes affected by public pressure. I still have confidence that the judges will not allow themselves to be corrupted by fear,” he had emphasised.
 

The Attorney General, however, reiterated that the defence is asking for the removal of the temporary detention and not the release of the accused. He suggested that the defence party should table more justification on why the temporary detention should be lifted. He then, went on in line with the suggestion of the Rapporteur to state that the appeal was baseless.
 

The state prosecutor revealed that in the last hearing, it was stated that the session of November 26 will be a request for liberty with caution but now, they noticed that it was rather an application for the temporary detention to be uplifted. The Lawyer also went on in line with the Rapporteur and said the petition is baseless and full of confusion. Following the debates, Justice Marc Ateba Ombela, ruled that the appeal was acceptable but rejected due to lack of justifications and facts.
 

The case concerning Titus Edzoa, Michel Thierry Atangana and Isaac Njimou, against FEICOM and the State, was adjourned to November 27, 2013, due to the fact that the Rapporteur reportedly developed a malaise leading to a bad voice that prohibited him from reading accurately. Meanwhile, by press time, the case of the former General Manager of FEICOM, Emmanuel Gerard Ondong Ndong and 15 others of the same enterprise, was going on. Ondong Ndong was jailed by the Mfoundi High Court for embezzling public funds.
 

First published in The Post print edition no 01483
 

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