Court dismisses Kuel Aguer’s case, frees him

By Tereza Jeremiah Chuei

The Special High Court in Juba has dismissed all the charges brought against the former Governor of Northern Bahr el Ghazal Kuel Aguer Kuel.

Passing the final court verdict yesterday, the presiding Judge Sumiya Sallah said the court decided to acquit Kuel of all charges levied against him and released him immediately.

She added that the persecution can appeal the ruling within 15 days.

Meanwhile the prosecution team leader, Latjor Kueth Jal said, “the decision of the Court today is that the court dismissed the case and release the accused immediately so as the persecution we present what we presented to the Court then the Court has the right to evaluate what we presented, and we have the right to appeal that decision within 15 days” Latjor noted.

However, the acquitted, Kuel Aguer said his arrest was intended to keep him off from the public, citing that the accusation labelled against him of attempting a coup was a false accusation.

“The intention was to keep me out of the public, not because I have committed any crime, it’s my constitutional responsibility to talk about the affairs of my country” he told journalists shortly after his release.

“If the affairs are not being done according to the constitution it’s a duty of any citizen of South Sudan to raise his voice according to article 46 in the Interim Constitutions of South Sudan 2011 as amended,” Kuel explained.

“Am sure I have not committed any crime against my country. South Sudan is a Country I love…. and if am to die I will die for South Sudan. Therefore, I cannot do anything that will harm it,” he continued.

Kuel and the co-accused were accused of subverting constitutional government by unconstitutional means and causing disaffection among security forces.

The prosecution team had charged Aguer under sections 52, 63, 66, 74, 75, 78 and 80 of the Penal Code Act 2008 which all talk about overthrowing the government.

Kuel was arrested in July 2021 after allegedly signing a declaration for civil disobedience dabbed the People’s Coalition for Civil Action (PCCA) which was calling for nationwide protest and demanding the resignation of the current top leaders.

He reportedly signed the PCCA declaration document as a representative of the South Sudan intellectuals’ group.

Aguer was accused alongside Wani Michael, Jame David Kolok, Rajaf Mohandis, Manase Mathiang, Daniel Makau and Abraham Awolich most of who are members of civil society organizations.

However, the former governor of Northern Bahr el Ghazal State, Kuel Aguer’s case was separated from that of his co-accused.

Kuel had spent more than a year in detention since his arrest before his trial at the Juba Special High Court which finally freed him of the unlawful detention.

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